A focus on quality as volatility persists
The risks of a prolonged U.S.-China trade standoff have increased, but we believe long-term fundamentals in emerging markets will offer opportunities.
The opinions expressed are those of the Portfolio’s managers and are not meant as investment advice or to predict or project the future performance of any investment product. The opinions are current through March 31, 2019, are subject to change at any time based on market and other current conditions, and no forecasts can be guaranteed. This commentary is being provided as a general source of information and is not intended as a recommendation to purchase, sell, or hold any specific security or to engage in any investment strategy. Investment decisions should always be made based on an investor’s specific objectives, financial needs, risk tolerance and time horizon. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results.
Top 10 equity holdings as a percent of net assets as of 03/31/2019: Royal Dutch Shell plc, Class A 4.0%, Pfizer, Inc., 3.8%, Nestle S.A., Registered Shares 3.7%, Roche Holdings AG, Genusscheine 3.3%, Total S.A. 3.1%, Lockheed Martin Corp. 3.0%, Procter & Gamble Co. 2.8%, AstraZeneca plc 2.6%, Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. 2.6% and Tokio Marine Holdings, Inc. 2.6%.
Risk factors: The value of the Portfolio’s shares will change, and you could lose money on your investment. International investing involves additional risks including currency fluctuations, political or economic conditions affecting the foreign country, and differences in accounting standards and foreign regulations. These risks are magnified in emerging markets. Fixed income securities are subject to interest rate risk and, as such, the net asset value of the Portfolio may fall as interest rates rise. Investing in high-income securities may carry a greater risk of nonpayment of interest or principal than higher-rated bonds. Dividend-paying investments may not experience the same price appreciation as non-dividend paying instruments. Dividend-paying companies may choose to not pay a dividend or the dividend may be less than expected. These and other risks are more fully described in the Portfolio’s prospectus.
Annuities are long-term financial products designed for retirement purposes. Annuity and life insurance guarantees are based on the financial strength and claims-paying ability of the issuing insurance company. The guarantees have no bearing on the performance of a variable investment option. Variable investment options are subject to market risk, including loss of principal. There are charges and expenses associated with annuities and variable life insurance products, including mortality and expense risk charges, management fees, administrative fees, expenses for optional riders and deferred sales charges for early withdrawals. Withdrawals before age 59 1/2 may be subject to a 10% IRS tax penalty and surrender charges may apply.