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Chicago's New Junk Bond Rating: Implications for Muni Markets
by Cooper J Howard and Rob Williams
May 20, 2015

What do investors need to know now that Moody's Investors Service has slashed Chicago's bond rating two notches to below investment grade?

Surging Bond Yields: Temporary Correction or New Trend?
by Kathy A Jones
May 15, 2015

Although the steep rise in yields since mid-April looks overdone to us, yields may keep climbing as easy foreign central bank policies raise expectations for growth and inflation.

International Investment: Political Risk May No Longer Be a Reason to Avoid Europe
by Jeffrey Kleintop
May 13, 2015

As mainstream parties regain ground lost to newer rivals, the increased political stability is making Europe more attractive for investors.

Why Corporate Profits Are Falling and What It Means for the Stock Market
by Jeffrey Kleintop
May 04, 2015

With global economic growth on the upswing, we think the recent decline in global corporate profits will be short-lived. 

How Will the Drought Affect California's Municipal Bonds?
by Cooper J Howard and Rob Williams
April 30, 2015

While the drought could dent revenues at some California water bond issuers, we think the state's general obligation bonds will be largely unaffected.

Corporate Bonds vs. Municipals: Which Make More Sense Now?
by Rob Williams and Collin Martin
April 29, 2015

With after-tax yields comparable to corporate bonds, are municipals now an opportunity for traditional corporate bond investors? 

The Bond Investor's Trilemma: Positioning for a Fed Rate Hike
by Kathy A Jones
April 16, 2015

Bond investors preparing for a Fed rate hike should consider the changing shape of the yield curve, the pricing of risk and declining liquidity. 

Don't Let International Elections Deter You From Your Investment Goals
by Michelle Gibley
April 16, 2015

Upcoming elections overseas threaten market volatility, but don't take your eyes off your international investment plan. 

Mastering Global Diversification: What the Masters Tells Us About the Markets
by Jeffrey Kleintop
April 15, 2015

As economic growth becomes more widespread, global investment diversification has become more crucial for investors.

FAQ: Tax Tips for Retirement Income
by Rob Williams
April 10, 2015

Our tax tips for cutting your bill to the IRS can help increase your retirement income and allow your portfolio to last longer.

4 Reasons to Be Cautious About High-Yield Municipal Bonds
by Cooper J Howard and Rob Williams
April 08, 2015

Investors chasing yield may be looking at high-yield municipal bonds as an alternative to corporate bonds, but high-yield munis carry plenty of risks of their own. 

With Declining Inflation, Do Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities Make Sense?
by Collin Martin
April 03, 2015

Inflation has plunged over the last year, yet there still may be reasons to buy Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities.

One of the Most Important Indicators of Growth Has Turned Positive for Europe
by Jeffrey Kleintop
April 01, 2015

Loan growth is picking up in the eurozone, which could indicate more spending and hiring, and increased growth for the European economy down the road.

4 Reasons Japanese Stocks Could Continue to Rise
by Michelle Gibley
March 31, 2015

Japanese stocks deserve a look from investors for reasons that go beyond Abenomics and the Bank of Japan's quantitative easing program.

Negative Interest Rates and Currency Craziness: What's Next?
by Kathy A Jones
March 19, 2015

Central banks have pushed currencies down and turned interest rates negative in some countries. What does this mean for your portfolio?

March Madness in the Stock Market: Which Factors Will Win the Influence Game?
by Jeffrey Kleintop
March 18, 2015

If we looked at stock market drivers as akin to the NCAA's March Madness, which factors would most influence the results?

The Fed, Housing Prices, Stocks and the Theory of Everything
by Jeffrey Kleintop
March 13, 2015

Should the Federal Reserve raise interest rates before the U.S. housing market has fully recovered?

Your Retirement Plan: How to Transition Your Portfolio for Retirement
by Rob Williams
March 13, 2015

Learn how a smart plan to shift your investments over time can position your portfolio to be ready for retirement.

Puerto Rico Bonds: How a Default Might Affect the Municipal Bond Market
by Cooper J Howard and Rob Williams
March 10, 2015

In the wake of a federal ruling that takes a bankruptcy process off the table, Puerto Rico is more likely to default on its municipal bonds.

Opportunities with Preferred Stocks and Securities
by Collin Martin
March 05, 2015

With the average yield on preferred stocks at an all-time low, investors may want to take an active approach to investing in these securities.

Currency Wars: Is a Weaker Currency Good or Bad?
by Michelle Gibley
February 27, 2015

What can currency wars do for an economy?

How to Create a Sustainable Retirement Spending Plan
by Rob Williams
February 25, 2015

To set up a sustainable retirement spending plan, we recommend tapping multiple sources of cash flow.

With Fed Rate Hike on Horizon, How Should Bond Investors Prepare?
by Kathy A Jones
February 20, 2015

As investors prepare for an expected Fed rate hike this year, how should they be positioning their portfolios?

Global Earnings Per Share Could Rebound Soon
by Jeffrey Kleintop
February 18, 2015

After peaking for the third time in eight years, will global earnings per share continue falling, or will they bounce back?

Schwab Bond Insights: Bank-Loan Funds, Green Bonds
by Cooper J Howard, Rob Williams and Collin Martin
February 17, 2015

In this issue, we cover the risks of bank-loan funds, and explain how green bonds work.

What Changes Will New Congress Bring for Investors?
by Michael T Townsend
February 09, 2015

Even with Republicans in control of the new Congress, we think the gridlock will persist on many issues. Here's our list of key dates and issues to watch.

Don't Be Fooled by Currency This Earnings Season
by Jeffrey Kleintop
February 04, 2015

Earnings growth in Europe is expected to outpace the U.S. this year, but a critical factor is the euro's weakness against the dollar.

3 Things You Should Know About Bank-Loan Funds
by Collin Martin
February 03, 2015

Before you invest in bank-loan funds, it’s best to understand the risks. 

Why ECB QE May Not Boost European Stocks For Long
by Michelle Gibley
January 30, 2015

Several ingredients are missing in order for the European Central Bank's (ECB) quantitative easing (QE) program to be successful, so a European stock rally may not last.

Eurozone Economy: The ECB Can't Save It
by Jeffrey Kleintop
January 22, 2015

Unless structural reforms are taken to address the root causes of deflation, any boost to the eurozone economy from the ECB's actions this week will likely be temporary. 

Federal Reserve: What's the Outlook for Interest Rates in 2015?
by Kathy A Jones
January 22, 2015

With inflation below the Fed's target but economic growth on the upswing, the interest rate outlook is fuzzy in 2015.

Retirement Income Strategies: 3 Key Building Blocks
by Rob Williams
January 15, 2015

We outline three key building blocks to help develop your retirement income strategies.

International Investments 2015: Top 5 Global Issues to Watch
by Michelle Gibley
January 14, 2015

If you're considering making international investments in 2015, we recommend you keep these issues in mind. 

Municipal Bond Outlook for 2015: Flatter Yield Curve, Increased Volatility
by Cooper J Howard and Rob Williams
January 08, 2015

After a stellar year in 2014, municipal bond returns may slow in 2015 as the yield curve is likely to flatten and volatility is expected to rise. 

Contrarian Investing: Be Prepared for the Top 5 Surprises in 2015
by Jeffrey Kleintop
January 07, 2015

In five areas of economics and finance, investors may want to be ready for possible surprises with a contrarian investing plan.

Corporate Bond Outlook 2015
by Collin Martin
January 07, 2015

We think the 2015 outlook for investment-grade corporate bonds is positive, but we still see risks in the high-yield bond market.

Bond Market Outlook 2015: Brace for Volatility
by Kathy A Jones
December 18, 2014

Investors should prepare for a more volatile fixed income market and potentially wider credit spreads in 2015.

Top 5 Ways Chinese Consumers Are Altering Global Investing
by Michelle Gibley
December 08, 2014

As the Chinese economy transitions to a more consumer-led growth pattern, global investors should be paying attention.

Why Buy Bonds With "Survivor's Options?"
by Collin Martin
December 05, 2014

Bonds with "survivor's options" can help protect the value of assets to be passed on to beneficiaries. 

How Will Falling Oil Prices Affect Municipal Bonds?
by Cooper J Howard and Rob Williams
December 03, 2014

Falling oil prices could affect revenues in oil and gas producing areas, so we review their potential impact on municipal bonds.

Will International Stocks Outperform in 2015?
by Jeffrey Kleintop
November 25, 2014

The U.S. current account—a measure of trade and investment flows in and out of the U.S.—may provide clues to where international stocks are headed relative to U.S. stocks.

What Central Banks Have Learned About Interest Rate Hikes
by Jeffrey Kleintop
November 13, 2014

A number of economies have had to reverse interest rate hikes in the last five years. What have central banks learned from this experience?

What the “Shutdown” by Europe's Government Means for Stocks
by Jeffrey Kleintop
October 30, 2014

While the European Central Bank is prevented from enacting more aggressive stimulus, the European stock market may underperform.

How Earnings Season Is Like Homecoming for Investors
by Jeffrey Kleintop
October 15, 2014

Earnings season is a time for investors to focus on the traditional measure of value: earnings.

Retirement Income Planning: What's Your Risk Capacity?
by Rob Williams
September 30, 2014

You've probably heard about risk tolerance, but when it comes to retirement income planning, a more important thing to understand is your risk capacity.

Not Always Tax Free: 7 Tax Traps of Municipal Bond Investing
by Cooper J Howard and Rob Williams
September 24, 2014

If you're interested in tax-free municipal bonds, you might want to keep an eye out for these seven tax traps.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac: Reform of Housing Giants Remains in Limbo
by Michael T Townsend
July 01, 2014

With efforts to reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac stalled this year, it will likely be 2015 before we see another attempt at reform. 

Preferred Securities: Are They a Smart Investment Now?
by Collin Martin
May 21, 2014

Preferred securities have delivered double-digit returns this year, but we think the bull run may not last.

Bonds: What You Need to Know About Yields
by Collin Martin
April 10, 2014

It's not hard to understand yield to maturity and the other types of bond yields. Here's what you need to know.


Investors should consider carefully information contained in the prospectus, including investing objectives, risks, charges and expenses. You can request a prospectus by calling 800-435-4000. Please read the prospectus carefully before investing.

Performance may be affected by risks associated with non-diversification, including investments in specific countries or sectors. Additional risks may also include, but are not limited to, investments in foreign securities, especially emerging markets, real estate investment trusts (REITs), fixed income and small capitalization securities. Each individual investor should consider these risks carefully before investing in a particular security or strategy.