- The fund will invest primarily in both local and external currency Asian corporate and sovereign bonds
Matthews Asia has launched a new strategic income fund, as an expansion of its Luxembourg-domiciled UCITS fund range.
The Matthews Asia Strategic Income Fund is managed by the same managers and will be run on the same philosophy as the firm’s US-based Asia Strategic Income strategy that was launched three years ago.
The fund is managed by Teresa Kong and co-managed by Gerald Hwang and Satya Patel, and will invest primarily in both local and external currency Asian corporate and sovereign bonds, in a bid to provide a total return over the long term with an emphasis on income, Matthews Asia said.
The fund takes a bottom-up approach to securities selection in order to construct a portfolio based on creditworthiness, exposure to the interest rate cycle and the potential for currency appreciation.
According to Matthews Asia, the significant structural reforms undergone by Asia’s bond markets and their subsequent growth has been “one of the region’s most important economic developments during the last decade”.
Kong added: “Investors’ fixed income portfolios tend to be underinvested in Asia since widely used global debt benchmarks generally allocate to the most indebted countries as opposed to the most creditworthy. Dedicated Asian fixed income allocations enable investors to potentially create a more diversified exposure across interest rate, credit and currency while enhancing the overall risk-return profile of a fixed income portfolio.”
Teresa Kong is a Portfolio Manager at Matthews International Capital Management and manages the firm’s Asia Strategic Income strategy. Prior to joining Matthews in 2010, she was Head of Emerging Market Investments at Barclays Global Investors, now known as BlackRock, and responsible for managing the firm’s investment strategies in Emerging Asia, Eastern Europe, Africa and Latin America. She developed and managed strategies spanning absolute return, active long-only and exchange-traded funds. In addition to founding the Fixed Income Emerging Markets Group at BlackRock, she was also Senior Portfolio Manager and Credit Strategist on the Fixed Income credit team. Previously, Teresa was a Senior Securities Analyst in the High Yield Group with Oppenheimer Funds, and began her career with JP Morgan Securities Inc., where she worked in the Structured Products Group and Latin America Capital Markets Group. She received both a B.A. in Economics and Political Science and an M.A. in International Development Policies from Stanford University. She speaks Cantonese fluently and is conversational in Mandarin.