Peso GS Weekly: Sell-offs may remain subdued
Local bond yields were lower last week. These seven bonds may help you structure your portfolio as we welcome February in a few days.
WHAT HAPPENED LAST WEEK
Strong buying momentum carried on last week as yields of peso Government Securities (GS) tracked the rally seen in global markets.
On Tuesday, the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) successfully reissued the 20-year Fixed Rate Treasury Note (FXTN) 20-25 at an average yield of 6.525% and a high of 6.600%. Similar to the previous bond auction, non-competitive bids tendered were more than double the amount being offered.
With cumulative bids reaching around PHP 134 billion, the BTr surprised market participants as it increased the non-competitive awards by PHP 14 billion, bringing the total accepted amount to PHP 49 billion from the regular offering of PHP 35 billion. The increased auction awards caused market players to be extra cautious in the long-end part of the yield curve. Thus, profit taking was more evident in this bond, causing it to underperform late last week.
Meanwhile, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Felipe Medalla said that the BSP will likely cap key policy rates at 6%, equivalent to additional rate hikes totaling 50 basis points from the current policy rate. This boosted the market’s risk taking appetite,
New opportunities for these top 5 bond picks
For hold-to-maturity investors, there are five bonds to consider as they rebalance their portfolio and take advantage of the opportunities amid continuing volatility.
With yields rising to levels last seen in 2018, we think that it is an opportune time to reinstate positions in peso government securities. This recent cheapening has been driven by several factors.
First, inflationary pressures are proving to be stickier both in the global and domestic markets. As a result, central banks have embarked on a steeper trajectory of rate hikes than initially expected, and investors have adopted a more cautious strategy in anticipation of higher rates.
Second, the persistent weakening of the peso isn’t helping either. With a weaker local currency, peso bonds are becoming less attractive, especially to foreign investors. We think that there could be more room for the peso to weaken through 2023, and that the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) may continue with their outsized rate hikes to help combat imported inflation.
These catalysts have all contributed to a sell-off and a weaker appetite for peso government securities.
However, we still see some opportunities, as buying demand from investors is expected to emerge at attractive levels that will keep peso yields supported. Here are our top picks and target yields: