Trading convertible bonds on emerging market underlyings in the pre-GFC period, Vishnu Kurella quickly learned that even indices can experience enormous daily moves. A macro portfolio manager who evaluates opportunities through the lens of optionality, he shares the lessons learned from trading through the frequent episodes of crisis that characterize modern markets. In this context, Vishnu emphasizes liquidity and the implications for being able to unwind trades without excessive friction. In his rendering, open-mindedness is also a critical part of the risk management process.
Here, it becomes important to continuously look for shifts in the macro risk regime and to be prepared to re-underwrite existing exposures as appropriate. From here, we jump to considerations in trade implementation and seeking to overlay an expected distribution of outcomes relative to that which is implied by option prices. Lastly, we talk as well about the current risk climate, one in which equity markets have been punished by inflation and Fed policy uncertainty. Vishnu shares his views on the pressure points. Noting the incredibly favorable environment for corporates in 2021 in which both base rates and credit spreads were extremely low, he sees something considerably more fragile now. I hope you enjoy this episode of the Alpha Exchange, my conversation with Vishnu Kurella.