For the past decade, Syntrinsic has developed our annual Capital Markets Forecast to inform long-term strategic asset allocations and near-term tactical shifts. Our long-term return assumptions for each asset class are based on quantitative building blocks that are less prone—but not immune to—our subjective musings. Of course, we continue to learn from experience, refining our process as we access new information.
Our approach provides a rational and measurable way to anticipate the returns available from equity, fixed income, real estate, commodities, hedge fund strategies, and private investments. We also realize that from time-to-time, economic and/or market conditions create opportunities to add value on the margins by modestly reducing or increasing asset class and segment allocations. As a result, we craft a near-term sentiment to complement our long-term forecast. Our near-term sentiment evaluates opportunities and measurable risks to adjust allocations with a three-year perspective in mind.
As we head into 2024, some of the major issues are obvious. Here at home, we are contending with presidential and congressional elections and the ongoing fight against inflation taking place at the big table where the governors of the Federal Reserve confer and at kitchen tables around the country. Meanwhile, geopolitical crisis in Eastern Europe and the Middle East, as well as potential conflict in the South China Sea intensify uncertainty and are a headwind to our globalized economy. But the past four years have reminded us that some of the most significant issues in the year ahead are not yet obvious. When we write the 2025 Forecast, it is almost certain that we will discuss tragedies and triumphs that are not yet in the predictive models. It is a humbling reminder of the challenges of this work.