Market Commentaries

Support and Guidance for our Clients, Bernardi Team Members and Colleagues

March 2020

Good afternoon everyone. We are all experiencing unprecedented events and uncertainty resulting from the COVID-19 health threat. I am writing to provide a brief summary of actions we undertook last week to ensure our firm remains fully operational to s …

Finding Relative Value in the Municipal Market

March 2020

Contagion risk is gripping society and financial markets alike. Year-to-date the S&P 500 is down nearly 15% while oil dropped 25% yesterday alone. Treasury bond yields have dropped precipitously and at one point every rung of the Treasury yield cur …

Unapparent Risk in Municipal Bond Land

December 2019

2019 municipal bond market performance has been stellar as its safe-haven status persisted in a year packed with monetary policy easing from global central banks. The Bloomberg Barclays long-term tax-exempt index is up 7.54% YTD.[1] While 4Q informatio …

RE: Wall Street Journal’s “Your Stock Trades Go Free but Your Cash Is in Chains”

October 2019

Jason Zweig’s October 4th article underscores that transactions costs should not be the only metric investors use to evaluate investment platforms. Additionally – and as importantly – they need to consider opportunity costs, the portfolio management pr …

Bond Portfolio Strategy in a Booming Market

September 2019

“Negative nominal interest rates are contradictory in an expectations-driven liquidity trap, unless they are able to eliminate deflationary expectations altogether…This paper has shown that negative interest rates are likely to make things worse in an …

Stranger Things & Global Central Banks

August 2019

The hit Netflix sci-fi series Stranger Things takes place in the fictional 1980’s town of Hawkins, Indiana. The show follows a group of middle school kids fending off other-dimensional monsters and Russian conspiracy plots. The threats are significant, …

Perspective for Advisors: Best Execution

April 2019

Registered investment advisors (RIA) who purchase fixed income securities for clients, should have best execution in the forefront of their minds. In July 2018, the SEC Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) issued a risk alert detail …


April 2019

A FOUNDATIONAL PILLAR: INVESTOR FAITH AND TRUST The municipal bond market provides our economy with a deep pool of investment capital.  Simply stated, Municipal Bonds Build America. Investor participation is high as both individual and institutional in …

Beware of the Average Benchmark

January 2019

January 18, 2019 By: Matthew P. Bernardi There are many facets and varieties of our active management approach to municipal bond portfolios. Credit analysis, ladder positioning, strategies offered, and tax-loss harvesting to name a few. Another importa …

Happy New Year and Thank You

January 2019

We wish everyone a happy New Year. October 1st marked the first day of our 35th year at Bernardi Securities.  In the fall of 1984 my father, Ed Bernardi, and several others opened the doors of Bernardi Securities for the first time. Our office was loca …

The Yield Curve: Where we have been and possibly going

October 2018

October 10, 2018 By Matthew P. Bernardi The U.S. economy is firing on all cylinders right now. Small business confidence has reached all-time highs, jobless claims are near 49 year lows, while household net worth continues to climb into record territor …

The Accumulation of Debt

July 2018

July 5, 2018 By Matthew P. Bernardi  “[Avoid] likewise the accumulation of debt”. – George Washington Since the financial crisis, municipal bonded debt outstanding has increased at a snail’s pace of 0.51% per year.[1] With corporate debt growing at an …

The Cost of Owning Municipal Bonds

May 2018

There are two possible ways an investor pays to access the municipal bond market and portfolio management services for a separately managed account: One-time transaction cost model (markup/down) Annual fee model As a hybrid-firm (broker-dealer & re …

Why Warren’s Advice May Be Wrong for You

March 2018

Warren Buffett’s annual letter is one of the best insights into the mind of perhaps the greatest stock picker in history. His letters offer a great window into how he built a $500 billion conglomerate of businesses from a mere, mid-size textile manufacturing company. Today, Berkshire Hathaway intersects with our lives in myriad ways from auto insurance to underpants to home brokerage services. The man, however, is not without his biases as it pertains to financial markets and asset allocation, including a distaste for active stock management, investment bankers, and bonds.

The Magic of 34

January 2018

The “Magic Square of 34” appears in the upper right side of Albrecht Durer’s 1514 copper plated masterpiece, “Melancholia.” The allegorical work is the subject of many interpretations. One interpretation asserts the scene depicts the age of Humanism, both its creative successes and unsolved frustrations.