When the markets crash unexpectedly, everyone is on the lookup for culprits. One of the leading theories behind the latest downdraft in stock prices is the rise in bond yields, which spooked the stock market. Derivative analysts have pointed the finger at Risk-Parity funds as the leading actors in the bond market rout. They contend that the combination of leverage use in these funds and forced selling because of changes in market environment have exacerbated the rise in bond yields.

I considered the effects of Risk-Parity funds on the bond market. Using three different analytical techniques, we concluded that Risk-Parity strategies did not exacerbate the downturn in bond prices (picture via Cliff Asness).



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