The Private Placement Corporate Debt Strategy seeks to provide a relatively high level of income and reasonable stability of capital by investing in a well-diversified portfolio of fixed income securities issued primarily by corporations, including corporate debt issued via private placement. The strategy includes bonds which do not have liquid, active secondary markets, as well as bonds which are not rated by recognized rating agencies. The strategy does not have a benchmark, and is managed by the PH&N Investment Grade Corporate team, a specialized team of experienced investment professionals embedded within the broader PH&N Fixed Income Team.
- Actively managed, fully diversified strategy designed to provide income and reasonable stability of capital by investing primarily in corporate bonds.
- May invest in illiquid and/or unrated bonds, however all bonds must be of investment grade quality as determined by the PH&N Investment Grade Corporate Credit team to be eligible for inclusion in the fund.
- Managed by the PH&N Fixed Income Team’s specialized group of experienced credit analysts and researchers, and supported by the resources and expertise of the firm's broader fixed income and equity teams.
- Not a benchmark-oriented strategy.
Investment philosophy & style
- The strategy’s primary objective is to earn 75-100bps of additional yield over and above more liquid corporate bonds, without taking undue credit risk.
- There are four distinguishing characteristics of the team’s philosophy:
- A conservative approach, with moderate positions taken concurrently in a number of strategies focusing on the risk/reward profile for the strategy and portfolio overall.
- Rigorous fundamental credit analysis is the primary requirement for long-term success. This can be enhanced – but not superseded – by valuation analysis.
- Active management strategies help the team benefit from changes in industry, individual security, and overall market conditions.
- An emphasis on risk controls, using strict guidelines and rigorous monitoring.
- This approach has been honed over many years, and aims to provide consistent and predictable returns, whether in terms of total return or in terms of income objectives. The key to achieving these objectives is to have many strategies working for the portfolio at the same time.
The team’s selection of corporate bonds is driven by a disciplined three-stage credit analysis process involving:
- A “top-down” industry group screen, based on macroeconomic factors and overall industry outlooks.
- A “bottom-up” fundamental analysis of specific credits based on their rigorous internal credit review.
- An analysis of each bond’s structure (i.e., term call features, covenants, etc.) and the relative valuation of the issue versus comparable securities.
The team incorporates a comprehensive risk-based approach that includes environmental, social, and governance downside risk analysis for applicable types of investments.*
This process results in a portfolio of investment grade corporate bonds that provides an attractive yield premium relative to other fixed income securities while limiting specific issuer risk, industry group risk, and macroeconomic risk.
Our distinctive approach to building a corporate bond strategy is the result of a combination of the following resources:
Investment grade credit edge
Our approach to the corporate bond market
- Portfolios are constructed using a consistent and repeatable process, with inputs from many individuals within the PH&N Fixed Income team.
- The team’s multiple-strategy approach means that the portfolio is constructed using a number of precisely-calibrated different strategies, subject to strict risk controls.
- A multi-stage compliance procedure ensures that the portfolio construction process remains consistent and adheres to the team’s guidelines.
- We use proprietary risk systems to monitor and measure the active risk budget for every portfolio. This tracking error can be dialed up or down depending on market conditions.
*Certain investment strategies or asset classes do not integrate ESG factors, including but not limited to money market, passive and certain third-party sub-advised strategies.