From Crypto to Credit Markets: Themes at Bloomberg Invest

(Bloomberg) -- From cryptocurrencies to market conditions to investment opportunities, here are the key takeaways from the Bloomberg Invest conference in New York. For the full TOPLive blog, see here.

  • Carlyle Group LP Co-Chief Executive Officers Glenn Youngkin and Kewsong Lee see a risk of underinvestment and warned investors against missing out on returns if asset prices keep rising. On global opportunities, Youngkin saw potential in Italy and Greece while Lee said don’t ignore the Far East.
  • KKR & Co. Co-Presidents Joseph Bae and Scott Nuttall see Japan as a top priority for investing in private equity amid growth in Asia. They said it’s a seller’s market right now for dealmaking, though competition is tough. Nuttall also said a global recession is possible in the next 24 months.
  • Cryptocurrency champion Michael Novogratz sees institutional investors coming to the digital currency space eventually. He said regulators were caught flat-footed last year during the historic runup in cryptocurrency values and working out some of the issues in this space will ultimately help. He said keep an eye on EOS and Telegram.
  • Short-seller Carson Block of Muddy Waters said fraudulent Chinese companies pose a risk to U.S. markets and investors should consider the nation’s equities as “sin stocks.” He cautioned that Chinese private companies are not purely private and don’t play by the rules of the rest of the global market.
  • Joseph Baratta, Blackstone Group LP’s global head of private equity, said the market is really expensive and there’s no single country where it would be time to buy. Asked about the prospect of a recession globally and in the U.S., he said the expectation of the CEOs of the companies in Blackstone’s portfolio “is for continued strong growth. I don’t see that changing anytime soon.” The risk, he said, is that when a recession comes, and it will, “I don’t think it will be anywhere near the magnitude of the ‘09-‘10 recession.” Even in a tougher environment, Baratta said Blackstone can still generate the same kind of return.
  • Bain Capital Co-Managing Partner Jonathan Lavine said tight credit spreads and flat risk curve suggest that defaults will be pretty low, though he is looking out for excess in credit markets. On the business cycle, Lavine said tax cuts can spur growth in the short run but fully implemented tariffs would be bad.
  • Two Sigma co-founder David Siegel touched on topics ranging from cryptocurrencies (don’t call them currencies) to infrastructure (sees mismatch with technological advances) to the overall market (no prediction on when bull market will end but investors should be cautious).
  • Man Group Plc Chief Investment Officer Sandy Rattray said humans still have an edge against machines in areas such as loans and corporate bonds.
  • TPG’s Bill McGlashan said the firm has invested 50 percent of its $2 billion Rise Fund, which is focused on investments that can deliver both returns and a positive social impact.

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