News

Voya Financial Releases 2020-2021 Impact Report

September 8, 2021

In a press release distributed by Business Wire, Voya Financial announced “that it has published its 2020-2021 Impact Report, which provides an overview of Voya’s environmental, social and governance (ESG) activities and performance from Jan. 1, 2020, through June 30, 2021.” Voya Financial Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Rodney O. Martin, Jr., said, “Our Impact Report reflects our commitment to making a positive difference in the world around us as it continues to evolve. This includes how our employees rose to the extraordinary challenges of the past 18 months – continually improving how we work together and serve our clients and communities.”

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Voya’s Sinha Comments On Expectations Of Fed’s Jackson Hole Meeting

August 27, 2021

US News & World Report reported this year’s gathering in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, billed as the Federal Reserve Board’s research symposium, “comes as the Federal Reserve is facing crucial decisions about whether and when to pull back on its highly accommodative monetary policy, which has kept interest rates low and helped stabilize the economy and the markets for 17 months.” Most observers expect any interest rate cuts “to begin next year with interest rate hikes not before the end of 2022 or perhaps not even until 2023,” but that “calculation has run into a wall of uncertainty amid the rise in coronavirus infections from the delta variant, which has led many governments, schools and businesses to impose new restrictions such as mask mandates and vaccine requirements.” The Fed “is very conscious of the reality that the markets are pretty much geared to low rates forever,” says Amit Sinha, head of multi asset design at Voya Investment Management. “Anything that allows the Fed to continue their easy stance for longer, they would rather be late to tightening than early.”

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Voya’s Sinha: Technology Improvements Have Democratized Alternative Investments

August 19, 2021

In an opinion piece for TheStreet, Voya Investment Management Head of Multi-Asset Design Amit Sinha says alternative investments in a portfolio have become more important than ever, and the market for those products “is only getting bigger.” Long accessible only for “large institutional investors, endowments, and the wealthy,” investments such as hedge funds, private credit, and private equity “have now been democratized to where the average investor can access these products and join what had once been an elite club.” This development is partially the result of “dramatic improvements in investment technology, bringing greater transparency, knowledge and access to various investment products with the potential for additional alpha generation.”

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Voya’s Cameron, Wood Say Cash-Flush Community Banks Can Find Growth In C&I Loans

August 18, 2021

In an opinion piece for the ABA Banking Journal (8/18), Voya Investment Management’s Bank Advisory Group Co-Managers Randy Cameron and David Wood say community banks today “are flush with cash,” but they are having trouble finding growth opportunities while “earning as little as zero to 10 basis points ... when the industry’s cost of funds generally exceeds this return by a fair margin.” For banks searching for growth, the authors “believe an answer lies within the syndicated loan market for secured C&I loans.” Firms like Voya “work directly with the agent banks to consolidate all of the borrowers’ data,” and Voya analysts “re-underwrite the transactions to bank-like standards for their client banks.” Cameron and Wood say the “relative value and efficiencies of this portfolio, combined with liquidity and flexibility that banks simply do not have with a local C&I portfolio, make these products something that community banks should consider.”

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Voya’s Sinha Says HSAs Can Help Retirees Prepare For Inflated Healthcare Costs

August 12, 2021

Go Banking Rates reported rising prices “are not fading away as quickly as the optimists had hoped — inflation, it seems, is here to stay.” While the short-term inflation “that’s causing sticker shock at the grocery store and the used car lot grabs all the headlines,” creeping price increases “that are just now on the horizon might present the bigger danger.” However, Voya Investment Management Head of Multi-Asset Design Amit Sinha said, “I worry more about non-pandemic-related inflation in retirement such as rising healthcare costs rather than short-term pandemic-related inflation.” Sinha added, “Typically, areas of the economy that face less competition tend to have greater sustained inflation. For retirees, this is likely to be healthcare. The only way to prepare in my opinion would be to make sure you have sufficient savings for sustained increases in these types of expenses. Using health saving accounts (HSAs) may be a way to achieve this.”

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Voya’s Hurtsellers Discusses Benefits Of Diverse Company Cultures

July 26, 2021

In an opinion piece for Financial Advisor Magazine Voya Investment Management CEO Christine Hurtsellers writes that over her “career in money management in several organizations — both public and private — I’ve seen the difference that a strong, innovative culture can provide — not only in terms of generating investment returns, but also for our firm’s employees.” Hurtsellers notes that despite how much has been “written over the years about the benefits of a diverse workforce ... the financial services industry still lags behind,” with, for example, Morningstar showing “that in the U.S., only one in 10 funds were led by a female portfolio manager.” This must change, Hurtsellers says, “especially if we want to adapt to evolving client needs and to truly deliver solutions that reflect the benefits of diverse thinking.” Hurtsellers adds, “if our industry is to thrive, everyone from the C-suite, to the fund managers to the support teams needs to adapt. Those that do will create great cultures that enable success for employees, shareholders and clients.”

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Voya’s Hurtsellers Discusses Challenges Amid Pandemic Changes, Experience As Bond Manager

July 10, 2021

In an interview with columnist Barry Ritholtz for Bloomberg Opinion’s Masters in Business podcast, posted to Ritholtz’s The Big Picture blog, Voya Investment Management CEO Christine Hurtsellers discussed “how her firm managed its way through the pandemic: The challenge was keeping employees engaged and mentally healthy even as they were feeling detached during the entire year.” Hurtsellers also discussed how her “prior experience as a bond fund manager — she was CIO of Fixed Income at Voya, managed the $650 billion retained portfolio of GSE wraps at Freddie Mac, and PM for securitized assets at Alliance Capital Management — affected her outlook on equities, elevating the preservation of capital as a key part of her investment philosophy.” Hurtsellers also explained “how raising five children, including one on the autism spectrum, has given her insights into the challenges for working mothers.”

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Voya’s Reinhard Says Impact Of Fed Meeting, Data Crosscurrents Leaving Investors “Whipsawed”

July 8, 2021

In a multi-segment appearance on Bloomberg TV, Voya Investment Management Managing Director and Head of Asset Allocation Barbara Reinhard said since the Federal Reserve’s most recent meeting, “bond yields peaked, and equity started to struggle,” which has “been a realization, and incorporating new information from the Fed that they are going to count this current surge in inflation towards their long-term goal of meeting two percent. And the change in that is that the markets are pulling towards the expectations that the Fed will start hiking rates into 2022.” Asked about a downside threshold for bond yields where she might become “a little bit more concerned,” Reinhard said, “when bond yields get down that low, they don’t become quite as an effective hedge against Treasurys, and that is very concerning, especially for people that are asset allocators. And unfortunately, if they go up too high, it starts to scuttle some parts of the more cyclical avenues in the market, such as homebuilders and cyclicals.”

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Voya’s Sinha Says “Goldilocks” Jobs Report Validates Growth Story, Fed Policy

July 2, 2021

Kiplinger reported the expectations-beating jobs report “was Wall Street’s central focus Friday, and the driving force behind new record highs in all three of the major stock indexes,” after the Labor Department reported 850,000 jobs created in June, beating analysts’ expectations of 720,000. This reaction came despite the unemployment rate, “which ticked higher to 5.9%, from 5.8% in May, and exceeded the 5.6% figure economists were looking for.” Voya Investment Management Head of Multi-Asset Design Amit Sinha called the report “effectively a goldilocks report for both the economy and markets,” adding, “It validates the growth story while reducing fears of the Fed taking away the punch bowl anytime soon.”

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Voya Investment Management Closes $70M Loan Deal With Centaurus Renewable Energy

June 29, 2021

A press release carried in Business Wire reports Centaurus Renewable Energy, developer “of the Arroyo Solar & Storage Project in McKinley County, New Mexico, announced today that it has closed a $70 million construction bridge loan facility provided by Voya Investment Management, the asset management business of Voya Financial.” The credit facility “will be used to make payments for project equipment and for other development and construction expenses.” Voya Investment Management’s Direct Infrastructure team, led by Tom Emmons and Ed Levin, organized the transaction.

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