Patrick Bolton, Tao Li, Enrichetta Ravina, Howard Rosenthal, 30 July 2019

The majority of shares in publicly traded companies in the US are held by institutional investors, who collectively have a large say on the broad objectives of these corporations. This column shows that there is a systematic correlation between the type of institutional investor and their shareholder voting ideology. The two key dimensions of ideology are social responsibility and management discipline.  

Michael Joyce, Zhuoshi Liu, Ian Tonks, 03 January 2015

Central banks in advanced economies implemented quantitative easing (QE) as a response to the Global Crisis. A key transmission mechanism of QE, emphasised by policymakers, has been the ‘portfolio balance’ channel. This column describes behaviour of insurance companies and pension funds using sectoral and micro-level data from the UK. The results show that investors shifted their portfolios away from government bonds towards corporate bonds. But portfolio rebalancing has been limited to corporate bonds and did not extend to equities. 

Gaston Gelos, Hiroko Oura, 23 August 2014

The landscape of portfolio investment in emerging markets has evolved considerably over the past 15 years. Financial markets have deepened and become more internationally integrated. The mix of global investors has also changed, with more money intermediated by mutual funds. This column explains that these changes have made capital flows and asset prices in these economies more sensitive to global financial shocks. However, broad-based financial deepening and improved institutions can enhance the resilience of emerging-market economies.

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