Morgan Stanley Says There’s Hope for Beaten-Down Emerging Bonds

(Bloomberg) -- Robust growth in emerging markets, a less aggressive Federal Reserve, a trade-war detente and attractive valuations will support a rally in developing-nation bonds next year, according to Morgan Stanley Investment Management.

The firm is betting on Argentina’s sovereign local and hard-currency bonds and local debt in Brazil and South Africa. On the corporate side, it favors bonds from Latin America and Asia over developing nations in Europe, which will be dragged down by Turkey. Brazilian pulp, meat and infrastructure companies are particularly attractive, according to money managers Eric Baurmeister and Warren Mar.

“We should start 2019 in a better place given where spreads have moved versus where valuations started at the beginning of this year,” Mar said in an interview.

Emerging-market assets sold off this year, pressured by a stronger dollar, higher interest rates globally and trade tensions between China and the U.S., the world’s two biggest economies. Stocks entered a bear market in October when Treasury yields crossed the 3.2 percent level, hard-currency sovereign bonds are headed for their first losses since 2013 and all major developing-nation currencies are set to end the year in negative territory.

Morgan Stanley Says There’s Hope for Beaten-Down Emerging Bonds

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