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Fiscal Cliff Likely to Slow Growth, but Not Cause Recession, According to Standish

BNY Mellon Fixed Income Manager Says U.S. Corporate Credit Markets Have Successfully Weathered Low-Growth Environments

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NEW YORK and LONDON, Oct. 25, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The U.S. fiscal cliff is not likely to send the economy into a recession, according to the October Bond Market Observations from Standish Mellon Asset Management Company LLC, the Boston-based fixed income specialist for BNY Mellon.

For bond investors, Standish said this means there could be opportunities in U.S. corporate credit markets.  Both U.S. investment grade and high-yield bonds over the last 20 years have posted positive excess returns when U.S. economic growth ranged between one percent and two percent, the report said.

Standish believes that a combination of recent actions by the Fed and an expected compromise deficit reduction package would be enough to prevent a recession.  The Fed's asset purchase program has eased financial conditions and supported the housing market.

If no action is taken to avoid the fiscal cliff, tax hikes and spending cuts amounting to 4.8 percent of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) will go into effect on January 1, 2013, the report notes.  However, Standish said a compromise deficit reduction package could reduce this drag to 1.4 percent of GDP. 

"While we don't see much room for cooperation between the Democrats and the Republicans on addressing the fiscal cliff, we also doubt either party will want to be held responsible for engineering a U.S. recession by allowing the entire $807 billion in deficit-cutting measures to take effect," said Thomas Higgins, global macro strategist for Standish.

Among the deficit-reduction efforts that Standish does expect will be an end to the two-percentage point reduction in the Social Security payroll tax, which has benefited U.S. households over the past year.   The Social Security program already is underfunded, and extending the payroll tax reduction will aggravate this shortfall, according to the report.

Standish also expects the Medicare payroll tax increase and the new surtaxes for high income tax payers on dividends and capital gains associated with the Affordable Care Act to become effective unless the Republicans sweep the Presidency and Congress.

"Under our base case scenario, the U.S. economy will suffer a fiscal drag of roughly 1.4 percent of GDP next year and U.S. real GDP growth will decelerate from 2.1 percent in 2012 to 1.4 percent in 2013," Higgins said.

 

Notes to Editors:

Standish Mellon Asset Management Company LLC, with approximately $104 billion of assets under management, provides investment management services across a broad spectrum of fixed income asset classes. These include corporate credit (investment-grade and high-yield), emerging markets debt (dollar-denominated and local currency), core / core plus and opportunistic (U.S. and global) strategies.  Standish also offers full service capabilities in insurance and liability driven investing. The firm also includes assets managed by Standish personnel acting as dual officers of The Dreyfus Corporation and The Bank of New York Mellon.

BNY Mellon Investment Management is one of the world's leading investment management organizations and one of the top U.S. wealth managers, with $1.4 trillion in assets under management. It encompasses BNY Mellon's affiliated investment management firms, wealth management services and global distribution companies. More information can be found at www.bnymellon.com.

BNY Mellon is a global financial services company focused on helping clients manage and service their financial assets, operating in 36 countries and serving more than 100 markets. BNY Mellon is a leading provider of financial services for institutions, corporations and high-net-worth individuals, offering superior investment management and investment services through a worldwide client-focused team. It has $27.9 trillion in assets under custody and administration and $1.4 trillion in assets under management, services $11.6 trillion in outstanding debt and processes global payments averaging $1.4 trillion per day. BNY Mellon is the corporate brand of The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation  (NYSE: BK). Additional information is available on www.bnymellon.com or follow us on Twitter@BNYMellon.

All information source BNY Mellon as of September 30, 2012. This press release is qualified for issuance in the UK and US and is for information purposes only. It does not constitute an offer or solicitation of securities or investment services or an endorsement thereof in any jurisdiction or in any circumstance in which such offer or solicitation is unlawful or not authorized. This press release is issued by BNY Mellon Investment Management (US) and BNY Mellon Asset Management International Limited (ex-US) to members of the financial press and media and the information contained herein should not be construed as investment advice. Past performance is not a guide to future performance.  The value of investments and the income from them is not guaranteed and can fall as well as rise due to stock market and currency movements.  When you sell your investment you may get back less than you originally invested. Registered office of BNY Mellon Asset Management International Limited: BNY Mellon Centre, 160 Queen Victoria Street, London, EC4V 4LA. Registered in England no. 1118580. Authorized and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. A BNY Mellon Company

SOURCE BNY Mellon



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