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The ‘QE trades’ under coronavirus: how is the EM thesis impacted?

Weekly investor research

30 March 2020

Imagine yourself five years from now, looking back at today. From that enviable vantage point, the ongoing coronavirus outbreak and associated market volatility will seem like mere anecdotes in a much broader narrative, whose origin and future direction were both defined long before the outbreak itself. This report examines how the coronavirus outbreak has impacted the broad case for investing in EM. We conclude that the true significance of the coronavirus shock is that it will advance the unwinding of the big ‘QE trades’, which were already in play prior to the shock. The coronavirus shock may have temporarily obscured the dynamics behind the QE trades, but when the dust settles investors will see clearly that these trades should continue, only at an even faster pace than even we had imagined.


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