December 2021-January 2022
Global Economy Seems to End 2021 With Solid Momentum

J.P. Morgan's David Lebovitz writes that while the pace of economic growth will gradually decelerate over the year, he expects it will remain above-trend. Consumers, inventories, and business investment will drive this economic activity.

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Sports and Healthcare Investing Have a Lot in Common

As William Blair's Tommy Sternberg writes, sports and healthcare investing seem unrelated until you consider defense's role in both. By keeping their opponents from scoring, teams can win more easily.

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A Framework for Mapping Modern Slavery Risk

More than 40 million people worldwide are estimated to be victims of various forms of modern slavery. AllianceBernstein thought leaders offer four tools to begin an assessment of risk factors on the impact forced labor has on investment portfolios.

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Understanding Return Forecasts for Public DB Plans
Public defined benefit plans face intensifying pressure as modest expectations for future investment returns continue to fall short of actuarial discount rates, write Callan thought leaders.
Bitcoin's Evolution as an Inflation Hedge and Currency

2021 was an impressive year for crypto as the market, led by Bitcoin, expanded to a market cap of roughly $3 trillion, up from $800 billion at the start of the year, writes Martin Gaspar, a CrossTower research analyst.

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Addressing the Environmental Challenge in the Maritime Industry
The maritime industry is a massive and critical component of the global supply chain, responsible for transporting approximately 90% of global goods and commodities, as well as producing clean electricity and low-carbon food, writes Svein Engh, head of the Blue Ocean Group, EnTrust Global's maritime investment platform. Due to the size of the maritime industry, it is responsible for approximately 3% of global CO2 emissions, as well as other pollutants.
Banks are Finally off the Naughty List
Banks are finally positioned to be rewarded by Santa for being "good" boys and girls, writes Matthew DeWitt Hansen, Founder and Chief Investment Officer at Financial Services Capital.
In Economics, Hyperinflation is Problematic, and a Root Cause of Economic Uncertainty
True hyperinflation, marked by unfettered price increases and severe currency devaluation generally occurs during times of turmoil or war, writes al Hartman, president, CEO, and Chairman of the Board of Directors at Hartman Advisors. This is a rare occurrence, he adds, in developed counties. Regardless, growing inflation rates are an important dynamic to observe, and investors can smooth the yield curve by employing alternative strategies.
U.S. Single-Family Housing Market Appears Poised to Benefit From Generational Demand Surge
The demand for single-family housing in the U.S. should be exceptionally strong over the next decade due to a combination of demographic forces and lagging underinvestment in residential stock, writes Ryan McCullough, Director - Research at Hines Research. The firm estimates that the market will require 17 million single-family housing starts from 2021-30. This would represent a dramatic escalation of home construction relative to any decade of the past 50 years and a generational opportunity for residential lot development, McCullough adds.
The Forecast for Fixed Income Returns
Better Than You Might Expect
We have reached a pivotal point in both the economic and monetary policy cycle, and uncertainty for fixed income is high, writes Rob Williams, Director of Research at Sage Advisory. He answers three key questions on every fixed-income investor's mind: where are rates going, what do returns look like, and what approach is best?
Capitalizing on Global Listed Infrastructure Investments
The Global Listed Infrastructure (GLI) universe continues to emerge as an investment strategy for investors seeking inflation-sensitive assets with the potential to deliver equity-like returns, says Wilshire's Cornell McCullom in this blog post. GLI can provide additional diversification to institutional portfolios, alongside other real assets such as midstream MLPs, commodities, and REITs, McCullom explains. With roughly 80 GLI products available, investors can choose from a variety of approaches.
Rising Inflation: What is the Impact on Real Estate Investments in Your Portfolio?
As inflation continues to increase, many things from grocery store items to alternative investment portfolio values will be affected. Here's what you should be mindful of in the months ahead, says Ryan Swehla, Principal and Co-founder at Graciada Partners.
TEXPERS Pension Observer
Vol. 4, 2021
Did you miss the final edition of TEXPERS Pension Observer for 2021 in your mailbox? You can access the digital edition by clicking the cover to the right.

The first edition of 2022 is coming soon! Look for it in the mail in February.
Contest: 3 Funding Strategies Could Win a $5K Award Each

The National Institute on Retirement Security and the Conference of Consulting Actuaries have launched a new public pension funding competition and award. Submissions are due online by Monday, Jan. 10 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

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The Texas Association of Public Employee Retirement Systems (TEXPERS) is a statewide voluntary nonprofit association that provides education and legislative advisory services to the trustees, administrators, professional service providers and employee groups that manage the retirement money of police, firefighters, municipal and district employees in cities across Texas.