Insights & Commentary

Pref ETFs Falter (Again): Why HFA/HCB are Logical Switch Candidates for Monthly Income

Following our October launch of the Hamilton Capital Canadian Bank Variable-Weight ETF (HCB), today we launched the Hamilton Capital Australian Financials Yield ETF (HFA). Both of these ETFs pay monthly dividends. HFA seeks to generate a yield of 6.5% or higher from a portfolio of higher dividend-paying Australian financials operating in arguably the world’s strongest and safest financial sector (aided by covered calls). Of note, the…

Australian Banks Outperformed the Canadian Banks During the Global Financial Crisis

It is well known that the Canadian banks performed very well during the financial crisis relative to their global peers, and the U.S. banks in particular. However, what is less well known is that the Australian banks did even better than the Canadian banks, generating higher returns from 2007 through 2009, the years encompassing the financial crisis (see chart below). As we explain in “Dividend-Heavy Australian…

Dividend-Heavy Australian Financials: History of Outperformance vs. Canadian Peers

All Canadian bank investors know that the sector has experienced very good performance over the past ten to fifteen years. However, most are less familiar with Australia, which actually has a history of long-term outperformance relative to the Canadian financials, with virtually identical volatility. Interestingly, as a testament to the strength of the Australian financial sector, its banks even outperformed the Canadian banks during the global…

HFY: Despite Global Sell-off, 5% Yield Helping HFY Hold in vs. Even the Lowest Beta Countries

In periods of high macro uncertainty/market volatility, certain countries’ financials tend to hold up better – i.e., decline less in corrections. Most prominent among these low beta countries are Canada, Australia and virtually all Northern European countries (HFY has ~20% exposure). These countries are all wealthy and importantly their financial sectors have healthy dividend yields. 2018 has been a very challenging year, with many global financial…

U.S. Financials | Analysts vs. the Markets (as Fundamentals/Stock Prices Diverge)

This has been a tough month for the financials, particularly banks. What made this correction unusual is that throughout October, the financials continued to post very high earnings growth, and with minimal downgrades in estimates/target prices, the ingredients for a sharp sell-off were largely absent. Of the 270 financial services stocks covered by the U.S. broker-dealer, Sandler O’Neill + Partners (SOP), over 70% met or beat…

U.S. Financials | Mid-Caps Longer-Term Outperformance in One Chart

Given the media attention given to the U. S. large-cap financials (e.g., JPM, MetLife, AIG), Canadian investors can’t be faulted for sometimes neglecting to diversify into the very large and varied mid-cap financial sector south of the border. That said, in our view, investors should not overlook this important sub-sector given its long-term history of material outperformance relative to its better known large-cap peers, as evidenced…

Notes from Chicago: Opinions on the Canadian Banks (part 1)

We recently met with the top management of four Chicago-headquartered U.S. mid-cap banks (see related October 9, 2018 “Notes from Chicago – Three Takeaways from the Windy City (Part 2)”). Given their large presence in this giant MSA, it was not surprising that the Canadian banks and their speculated U.S. expansion plans were a frequent discussion topic. Chicago is the single most important market to Canadian…

Notes from Chicago: 3 Takeaways from the Windy City (part 2)

We recently met the top management of four U.S. mid-cap banks headquartered in Chicago (see related October 10, 2018 “Notes from Chicago – What the Banks Said About the Canadian Banks/M&A (Part 1)”). Chicago is the third largest U.S. MSAwith real GDP of US$583 billion and a population of 9.6 million. Although large, the Chicago MSA has one of the least favourable demographic profiles among the “large…

HBG/HFY Outperforming Almost Everything (in a Sea of Red)

Despite a very challenging year for global financials/banks, the Hamilton Capital Global Bank ETF (HBG) and Hamilton Capital Global Financials Yield ETF (HFY) are both outperforming their benchmarks, as well as virtually all relevant country indices year-to-date. In fact, with concerns over global trade, emerging market volatility, European politics, and the shape of the yield curve, virtually all relevant global financials and bank indices are down…

HFMU.U: Much Lower Drawdowns than U.S. Large-Cap Financials

In our September 4th, 2018 ETF Manager Comment “HFMU.U Outperforms U.S. Large-Cap Financials in Year #1 Rising 15%, Despite Two Formidable Obstacles” we discussed the performance of the ETF in its first year. However, as a follow up, we thought it would be helpful to address risk and volatility of returns. Using monthly data, the U.S. Large-Cap Financials index declined 5 straight months (February to June)…

Canadian Banks: Mean-Reversion Strategy for Higher Returns/Lower Risk

On October 2nd, 2018, Hamilton Capital will be launching the Hamilton Capital Canadian Bank Variable-Weight ETF (HCB). This ETF will consist of the Big-6 Canadian banks, rebalanced monthly to capitalize on the long-term mean reversion tendencies of the sector. Specifically, it will overweight the three most oversold banks from the prior month (to ~80%) and underweight the three most overbought banks (to ~20%). Please note: The…

HFMU.U Outperforms U.S. Large-Cap Financials in Year #1

Up ~15%, Despite Two Formidable Obstacles Our Hamilton Capital U.S. Mid-Cap Financials ETF (USD) rose 15% in its first year, outperforming the U.S. large-cap financials index (S5FINL Index). The sheer earnings growth of HFMU.U holdings supported this outperformance despite two very formidable obstacles, both of which we believe are unlikely to recur. Of importance, HFMU.U achieved this outperformance with significantly lower drawdowns and volatility. What were these…

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