Last updated: 08:22 / Monday, 4 April 2016
Monthly Outlook

Bill Gross: "Investors Cannot Make Money When Money Yields Nothing"

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Bill Gross: "Investors Cannot Make Money When Money Yields Nothing"

In his latest monthly outlook, Bill Gross mentions that negative interest rates are real but investors seem to think that they have a Zeno like quality that will allow them to make money, otherwise why would a private investor buy a security at minus basis points and lock in a guaranteed loss? The bond guru states that "zero and negative interest rates break down capitalistic business models related to banking, insurance, pension funds, and ultimately small savers. And although under current conditions "they can’t earn anything! ... many of them are using a bit of Zeno’s paradox to convince themselves that they will never reach the loss-certain finish line at maturity." But as Gross mentions, some investor has to cross the finish/maturity line even if yields are suppressed perpetually, which means that the “market” will actually lose money.

And this applies to high yield bonds and even stocks. "All financial assets are ultimately priced based upon the short term interest rate, which means that if an OBL investor loses money, then a stock investor will earn much, much less than historically assumed or perhaps might even lose money herself." The reality, according to Gross, is that Central banks are running out of time. Their polices consisting of QE’s and negative/artificially low interest rates must successfully reflate global economies or else markets, and the capitalistic business models based upon them and priced for them, will begin to go south.

According to him, during 2017, the U.S. needs to grow 4-5%, the Euroland 2-3%, Japan 1-2%, and China 5-6% so that central banks can normalize rates or "capital gains and the expectations for future gains will become Giant Pandas – very rare and sort of inefficient at reproduction... Investors cannot make money when money yields nothing." He concludes.

You can read the full letter in the following link.

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