While long-term global interest rates have generally been rising, the rate of increase picked up substantially in the U.S. following the U.S. presidential election.
Strong demand for corporate bonds has helped push credit spreads tighter across all sectors and the average spread of the indexes are now much tighter than their long-term averages.
Though most fixed-income sectors have given back many of the gains they generated earlier this year, the high-yield sector had been able to buck the downward trend.
After years of downgrades outpacing upgrades, we upgraded the same number of companies as we downgraded in the fourth quarter.
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