Clive Smith

Clive Smith is the Senior Portfolio Manager on Russell Investments’ Australian fixed income team. Responsibilities span management of Russell Investments’ Australasian fixed income funds as well as conducting capital market and manager research...


Want to make a quick profit by shorting Australian bonds? Not so fast! This time could be different.

Clive Smith

Recently Australian bond yields have moved below those of the US. Historically such negative spreads have tended to be uncommon and short lived. So let’s all rush out and short Australian bonds relative to US Treasuries and make some quick money. Not so fast! This time things could be different. Show More

Australian Bonds

Non-Conforming Loans : The risk is in the detail

Clive Smith

The recent growth in the non-conforming mortgage market has provided increased opportunities for investors to boost returns without the appearance of taking on much in the way of additional risk. But appearances can be deceiving and investors need to remember that there is no such thing as a “free lunch”. Show More

Non Conforming Loans

Are the Pieces Falling into Place for an RBA Rate Rise?

Clive Smith

The consensus view is that it is unlikely that the Reserve Bank of Australia (“RBA”) will act to raise cash rates in 2018. While not all the pieces are in place yet to justify a rate rise, it may not take that much to get the RBA over the line. Show More

rba Russell Investments

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Are bonds as defensive as they used to be?

Clive Smith

Many investors focus on the materially lower volatility in returns exhibited by fixed income securities when considering the potential diversification benefits when combining them with equities. Unfortunately, the equally important diversification benefits associated with the negative correlation of returns between the two asset classes can often be overlooked. Show More

bonds Correlation with Equities

Term deposits: Are “reports of their death greatly exaggerated?”

Clive Smith

Since the financial crisis in 2008 regulators globally have systematically been tightening banking regulations in a reversal of the more liberal framework of the 2000s. In Australia one of the new regulations introduced, the Liquidity Coverage Ratio, is having a material impact on the way investors should view term deposits. Show More

term deposits

Green Bonds: A more grass roots method to helping the planet

Clive Smith

The green bond market has grown and evolved rapidly as investors have become more environmentally aware. Now the green bond market represents a valuable compliment to more traditional responsible investment equity funds and some would argue offers a more direct method of supporting responsible investment initiatives. Show More

Green Bonds

The Reserve Bank of Australia’s 2018 New Year Resolution: Correct the policy Mistake of 2016!

Clive Smith

In 2016, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) cut the official cash rate to just 1.50%. This decision may now come back to haunt them as they seek to legitimise a series of rate rises in 2018. Acknowledging the advantage of hindsight, we review the RBA’s rare policy mistake. Show More

RBA Policy Mistake

Cash returns no longer set by committee

Clive Smith

In the shadow of accusations of rate rigging by several banks, the process by which the interbank lending rate is set in Australia is being overhauled. Importantly these changes, while technical in nature, may have material implications for investors seeking to get the optimal outcomes from their cash investments. Show More


Three Arguments Against a ‘Bondcano’

Clive Smith

One argument for not holding longer dated bonds has been that the process of normalising monetary policy globally risks triggering a ‘bondcano’. While there is always the potential for this to occur three arguments, albeit interrelated, are put forward as to why expecting a ‘bondcano’ may be overly pessimistic. Show More


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Bank Hybrids – Still as safe as houses?

Clive Smith

The Global Financial Crisis of 2008 (GFC) was a turning point for bank hybrid investors. Though most investors still focus on the traditional risks associated with bank hybrids, regulatory changes have not only altered the risks investors in hybrids are exposed to but also increased the total level of risk.... Show More

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