Welcome back to Research Perspectives! This edition features three nuanced investment topics with real portfolio management implications. For example, we begin with an article that considers the shifting inflationary (and disinflationary) forces and whether the potential for inflation is still relevant for today’s investors. The next piece is a bullet-point primer providing an inclusive, but streamlined, summary of emerging market debt as a viable investment option. We follow that with a discussion on a specific segment of the hedge fund universe known as alternative risk premia funds. These funds seek to systematically capture return sources and are beginning to be used as a complement to liquid alternative allocations.
This edition also features a few articles on very topical subjects with potentially significant broad-based implications. We start with an announcement of our upcoming comprehensive report, The Sequel, a follow-up to our 2015 paper, Investing in a Time of Climate Change. On a related note, this edition of Research Perspectives also includes a postcard from Alexis Cheang, featuring her thoughts on Mercer’s responsible investment efforts. We then briefly address some applications and implications of the emergence of artificial intelligence. The final piece tackles the emergent topic of cryptocurrencies, considering both the causes for enthusiasm as well as pending challenges.