PNC Investment Corner - PNC
Investment Corner is your connection to PNC's investment expertise. Read the latest thinking from the investment strategy team and listen to key thought leaders from PNC talk about the impact of market or economic activity. From insightful commentary and economic updates to informative articles and videos, we invite you to explore these resources.

Watch Like a Hawk

Brave New (Consumer) World

European Vacation

Repatriation Games

Investor Expectations

PNC’s 2017 Outlook

Smart Beta

The Ever-Mysterious Stock Market

Election 2016

In Search of an Elusive Yield

After Brexit, New Breginnings?

A REIT Of One’s Own

Back Where We Started

Smart Beta

Oil Prices – Going Down, Down, Down?

Election Year 2016 – Here We Go Again

  • Watch Like A Hawk

  • Brave New (Consumer) World

  • Repatriation Games

  • PNC’s European Vacation

  • Are Investors Expecting Too Much?

  • PNC 2017 Outlook

  • Normal Abnormality in the Markets

  • The (not so) New World of Smart Beta

  • Election Days Are Here Again

  • In Search of an Elusive Yield

  • A REIT of One’s Own

  • After Brexit, New Beginnings?

  • Get Smart with Smart Beta

  • Back Where We Started Again

  • Oil Prices: Going Down, Down Down?

  • Election Year 2016 – Here We Go Again

May 21, 2018

May 14, 2018

May 7, 2018

April 30, 2018

April 23, 2018

April 16, 2018

April 9, 2018

April 2, 2018

March 26, 2018

March 19, 2018

March 12, 2018

March 5, 2018

February 26, 2018

February 20, 2018

February 12, 2018

February 5, 2018

January 29, 2018

January 22, 2018

January 16, 2018

January 8, 2018

January 2, 2018

December 26, 2017

December 18, 2017

December 11, 2017

December 4, 2017

November 27, 2017

November 20, 2017

October 2017 Index

November 13, 2017

November 6, 2017

Global Market Snapshot: April 2018

Headlines overshadow fundamentals.

Global Market Snapshot: March 2018

Market volatility finally returns as investors closely eye interest rates and inflation.

Investment Outlook: February 2018

In this month’s Investment Outlook, we address the breakneck start for equity markets in 2018 on the heels of tax reform legislation passed in late 2017.

Investment Outlook: January 2018

This month’s Investment Outlook reflects our view that given the strong growth in the U.S. and global economies, the extraordinary monetary policies previously undertaken by the Federal Reserve (Fed) and other major global central banks are becoming less necessary.

October 2017: Fright or Flight

October can be a frightening time for the markets, with history showing that some of the toughest months on record for financial markets have fallen in October.

September 2017: A (Re)Balancing Act

Escalating geopolitical tensions, Washington politics, terrorism, and shifting Federal Reserve (Fed) policy helped bring volatility to markets this summer.

August 2017: When Doves Cry

The era of extraordinary monetary policy is now coming to a close, and with good reason, as economies have significantly recovered since the days of the Great Recession.

July 2017: The Shifting Consumer Landscape

The U.S. consumer is in the midst of a revolution where new preferences are met with innovative sector dynamics.

June 2017: Midyear Update: Deciphering the Headlines

Investors have been kept busy thus far in 2017 trying to interpret a deluge of media reports, political events, economic data, and other news.

May 2017: European Vacation

In this Investment Outlook we discuss: an update on Europe, key political events, and European equities.

April 2017: Around the World in Dividends

In this Investment Outlook we discuss, attributes of dividend-paying stocks, global economy and dividend opportunities, and investment implications.

March 2017: The Future of the Eurozone

Economic indicators show the Eurozone on a path of recovery. Europe’s economy is healing, and the evidence of this is in the data. Economic growth has accelerated and the employment picture is much improved.

February 2017: Active Management: Past, Present, and Future

One of our themes for 2017 is life or death of active management, in which we acknowledge the precarious situation currently facing active management. We expand upon the theme in this Investment Outlook, highlighting a study we conducted as well as the research of others to develop a framework for understanding the past, current, and potential future environment for active management.

January 2017: Themes: 2017 Outlook Part II

This month’s Investment Outlook reflects our view that 2017 will have many themes to consider. In late 2015, the Federal Reserve (Fed) began ushering in a new era by ushering out extraordinary measures aimed at supporting the economy following the financial crisis and Great Recession. In December 2016, the Fed raised interest rates for the second time since 2006, after the first initial raise off of zero in December 2015. The Fed currently forecasts an additional three raises in 2017 and three for 2018. PNC economists expect two raises in 2017 and three raises in 2018.

December 2016: 2017 Outlook Part I

Keeping with one of our themes going into 2016, monetary policy diverged this year. Market attention was focused on forecasting the Federal Reserve’s (Fed's) path for raising interest rates while expecting other central banks to continue to be accommodative, specifically the European Central Bank (ECB) and the Bank of Japan.

November 2016: The Election and Beyond

The 2016 election will be held November 8, not news to anyone at this point. This election year has been filled with media attention and public scrutiny. From a market perspective, financial markets typically do not favor uncertainty, and some volatility entered the arena due to the fast-paced developments of the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign.

October 2016: On the Trail with Smart Beta

In this month's Investment Outlook we discuss: an introduction to smart beta and its uses, the PNC Smart Beta Allocation, and smart beta factors and backtesting.

September 2016: Got Any TIPS

In this month's Investment Outlook we discuss: the current inflation environment, the Fed and inflation, and Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS).

August 2016: Doing What Comes Unnaturally

In this month's Investment Outlook we discuss: short-term versus long-term active manager performance; using performance data to make active manager decisions; PNC’s portfolio construction process; and current performance of active managers.

July 2016: The New REIT Street

Real estate investment trusts (REITs) have been one of the best performing asset classes this year. The FTSE NAREIT All Equity Index (FNER) is up 7.0% through June 24, 2016, and when the reinvestment of dividends in included, has returned 8.8%. This outpaces the S&P 500®, which has moved -0.3% in the same time period, up 0.8% on a total return basis.

June 2016: Argentina Returns

After more than 15 years in technical default, Argentina re-entered the credit markets in April 2016 with a bond offering that was oversubscribed multiple times. It is no coincidence that in December 2015, for the first time since 1916, a nonradical or non-Peronist party candidate, Mauricio Macri, was democratically elected as president and sworn into office.

May 2016: Brexit Stage Left

On June 23, 2016, the United Kingdom (U.K.) will hold a referendum vote on whether to cede its membership in the European Union (EU). This movement, which began in whispers seemingly without much possibility of coming to fruition, has gained strength this year due to continued frustration with the perceived missteps of EU and U.K. leaders.

April 2016: Signs of Spring

Last month’s Investment Outlook, Market Madness, discussed the volatility and uncertainty that unhinged markets at the onset of 2016. A lot can happen in a month, and following a five-week rally in the markets, the S&P 500®has reversed its losses year to date and is up more than 11% from its February 11, 2016, low. One could simply ride the waves of bears and bulls, and curiously we notice how easily soothed investors can get with such a bounce back in the markets. But what does this really mean longer term? And do investors surrender to current market sentiment when making investment decisions.

March 2016: Market Madness

Markets kicked off 2016 amid a flurry of perceived global concerns, fueling a selloff in risk assets and amplifying volatility. Topically, concerns about global growth, China and its stock market, oil prices, the U.S. economy, the Federal Reserve (Fed) and the forward path of interest rates, and geopolitics are drivers of the uncertain outlook. The market response has been swift and certain, both as the market moved down and as it recovered. Our purpose in this outlook is to address concerns about how such markets can be interpreted and how to respond accordingly.

February 2016: New Investments Path with Smart Beta

In this month’s Investment Outlook, New Investment Paths with Smart Beta, PNC Chief Investment Strategist Bill Stone discusses a wide range of smart beta strategies which PNC believes can be an attractive addition to traditional investment portfolios.

January 25, 2016 – Earnings Snapshot 4Q15

Fourth quarter earnings season reached full speed last week, with 15% of S&P 500® constituents reporting thus far. Blended earnings of -6.0% (actual growth combined with consensus estimates) are trailing estimates from the start of the quarter, with the biggest drag from Energy and Materials. The percentage of companies beating expectations is relatively in line with levels seen over the past year at 72.4%. The earnings surprise of 270 basis points is a bit below levels from previous quarters, which tracked closer to 400-500 basis points. (Table 1). Excluding Energy, earnings are tracking a bit behind, although it is still early in the season, and based on historical upside, we expect this to turn positive as the season progresses.

January 7, 2016 - Global Market Unease

Global markets have had a tumultuous start thus far in the first few trading days of 2016, with a number of factors affecting market sentiment, triggering global equity markets to sell off. In the United States, the S&P 500® had its sixth-worst first trading day of the new year performance on Monday since 1928 (-1.53%). History has shown that reversion does tend to occur when markets have gotten off to a rough start, while we note the turnaround is typically not a quick occurrence.

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