Showing posts from May, 2024

Buy in May and Stay to Play?

Alex Harring and Sarah Min of CNBC report Dow closes more than 570 points higher to post best day in 2024, stocks wrap a winning May: The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped Friday for its best session of the year, as investors wrapped up a strong month after the Federal Reserve’s preferred inflation measure came in largely around expectations. The blue-chip Dow climbed 574.84 points, or 1.51%, to 38,686.32, lifted by Salesforce and UnitedHealth ’s respective advances of 7.5% and 2.8%. The S&P 500 added 0.80% to 5,277.51. The Nasdaq Composite ticked lower by 0.01% to 16,735.02, as Nvidia and a few other megacap technology stocks took a hit. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq snapped five-week win streaks with slides of 0.51% and 1.1%, respectively. The blue-chip Dow slipped 0.98%, marking a second straight week of losses. Despite the tough week, it was a winning May, with each of the major benchmarks registering a sixth positive month in seven. The Dow added 2.3% this month, whil

CDPQ CEO Charles Emond Reaffirms $100B Target in Quebec Assets by 2026

Clémence Pavic of Le Devoir reports CDPQ wants to be even more present in Quebec (translated from French): The Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec wants to continue to increase its impact on the Quebec economy. The institution is staying focused on its target of holding $100 billion in assets in Quebec by 2026, its CEO, Charles Emond, said on Wednesday. The Caisse also wants to continue to focus on “the immense potential” of artificial intelligence to increase its returns. “We already have a strong presence here. We are invested in 550 companies in Quebec. And our ambition is to have even more impact,” underlined Charles Emond, president and CEO of the Caisse de dépôt, during a conference organized by the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal. In 2014, the value of the Caisse's Quebec assets was approximately 60 billion Canadian dollars. It amounted to 68 billion in 2020, then to 88 billion last year. The objective? 100 billion by 2026. “Our presence is equivalent

On HOOPP's Maniacal Focus on Liquidity

Amanda White of Top1000funds reports on HOOPP’s constant portfolio refresh; focus on liquidity: An increased focus on liquidity management through factors, a leaning towards public markets and robust risk management are all key to implementing HOOPP’s “maniacal focus on liquidity” that helps CIO Michael Wissell sleep at night. Amanda White spoke to the Toronto-based investment chief ahead of the Fiduciary Investors Symposium. In comparison to its Canadian peers with huge weightings to private markets, the C$112 billion HOOPP leans slightly towards public markets, a preference consistent with its liability-driven approach and focus on member outcomes. For instance, it has a 26 per cent allocation to public equities and 12 per cent to private equity and Wissell believes public companies are still bringing ingenuity that is worth investing in. (CPP Investments has 24 per cent public equities and 33 per cent private equities by way of comparison.) “The innovation some of th

OMERS CEO Blake Hutcheson Tackles The One Question Head On

OMERS President and CEO Blake Hutcheson, recent recipient of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce Lifetime Achievement Award and the Order of Ontario, recently gave a speech at the Empire Club of Canada where he highlighted how his organization is positioned to deliver for its members in the years to come and the positive impact that their pension promise is having on our provincial and national economies. This is a great speech well worth listening to. Blake is a born speaker, very comfortable in front of the podium and also has a great sense of humour. He began by acknowledging some of the giants that have spoken at the Empire Club of Canada, mentioning Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher, two of his favourites. Blake also quoted Thatcher saying he can relate to this from time to time: "If I walked on water, my harshest critics would say it's because I cannot swim." There is one truism about being a CEO anywhere, it's lonely at the top and sometimes you have t

Andrew Coyne Is Dead Wrong on CPP Investments' Active Management

Andrew Coyne laments in his latest opinion piece that eighteen years and $46-billion later, the CPP admits it could have earned more just by buying index funds: The Canada Pension Plan Fund had a bad year last year. You’d never know it to read the latest annual report from the fund’s managers, the CPP Investment Board, which spends much of its nearly 80,000 words boasting how, thanks to the herculean efforts of its employees and the sophisticated investment stratagems of its managers, it eked out an 8-per-cent return on investment for the CPP’s beneficiaries. But of course it did: asset markets generally were up wildly last year. As an investment manager, you’d have to have gone pretty far out of your way not to have earned a sizable return. Indeed, the fund’s benchmark “reference portfolio,” a composite of global equity and bond indexes, gained 19.9 per cent on the year. What does that mean? It means that if the fund’s managers had stopped trying to pick stocks and just

Best Caisse Scenario?

James Bradshaw of the Globe and Mail reports a debate is raging over whether Canada’s pension plans invest enough of their vast assets at home and Charles Emond – the man charged with producing big returns while contributing to Quebec’s economy – is at the centre of it all: Charles Emond leans into the microphone, ready to act out a perennial ritual for the CEO of Quebec’s largest pension fund manager: parrying questions from politicians about whether its investments in its home province—which account for one-fifth of its $434-billion portfolio—are enough. It’s late April, and Emond is appearing at a hearing at Quebec’s National Assembly, where parliamentarians are zeroing in on a perceived dilution of the share of assets the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec has invested at home, from 26.1% a decade ago to 20.3% today. Shouldn’t the Caisse, they ask, at least get back to that previous threshold? Speaking softly in French, Emond reminds MNAs that the Caisse set a targ