The preliminary agenda is available and registrations are now being taken for Crane's Money Fund Symposium, which will take place June 21-23, 2017 at The Hyatt Regency Atlanta, in Atlanta, Ga. Money Fund Symposium is the largest gathering of money market fund managers and cash investors in the world. Last summer's event in Philadelphia attracted a record 575 attendees, and we expect yet another robust turnout for our 9th annual event in Atlanta this June. Symposium participants include money fund managers, marketers and servicers, cash investors, money market securities dealers, issuers, and regulators. Visit www.moneyfundsymposium.com) for more details. Registration for attendees is $750, and discounted hotel reservations are also now available. We review the agenda and conference details below. (Click here to see the full brochure.)

Money Fund Symposium's agenda kicks off with the keynote, "The Elevation of Money Market Funds," featuring Martin Flanagan, President & CEO of Atlanta-based Invesco. The rest of the Day One agenda includes: "Private Money Funds, SMAs and ETFs," with Deborah Cunningham of Federated Investors, Rich Mejzak of BlackRock, and Andrew Wittkop of PIMCO; "Corporate Investment & Issuance Issues," with Treasury Strategies' Tony Carfang, and AFP's Jeff Glenzer; and, "Major Money Fund Issues 2017," featuring John Donohue of J.P. Morgan A.M., Tracy Hopkins of Dreyfus/BNY Mellon CIS, and Pat O'Callaghan of Goldman Sachs A.M.. (The opening evening's reception will be sponsored by Bank of America Merrill Lynch.)

Day 2 of Money Fund Symposium 2017 begins with "The State of the Money Fund Industry, with Peter Crane of Crane Data, Rick Holland of Charles Schwab, and Alex Roever of J.P. Morgan Securities. The rest of Day Two features: "Senior Portfolio Manager Perspectives," including Kevin Gaffney of Fidelity Investments, Jeff Plotnik of First American Funds, and Rob Sabatino of UBS Asset Management; "Government and Treasury Money Fund Issues," with Mike Bird of Wells Fargo Funds and Marques Mercier of Invesco; "Muni & Tax Exempt Money Fund Issues" with Fidelity's John Vetter.

The Afternoon of Day 2 (after a Dreyfus-sponsored lunch) features: "Dealer & Issuer Panel: Looking at Supply," moderated by Laurie Brignac of Invesco, with Stewart Cutler of Barclays, John Kodweis of J.P. Morgan Securities, and Jean-Luc Sinniger of Citi Global Markets; "Ratings Agency Roundtable: Criteria, Risks, NAVs," with Robert Callagy of Moody's Investors Service, Greg Favilevich of Fitch Ratings, and Michael Masih of S&P Ratings; "MMFs in Ireland, France & China," with Reyer Kooy of IMMFA, Alastair Sewell of Fitch Ratings, and Jonathan Curry of HSBC Global AM; and, "Brokerage Sweep Options & Issues" with Ted Hamilton of Promontory Interfinancial Network and Sunil Kothapalli of the Wells Fargo Advisors. (The Day 2 reception is sponsored by Barclays.)

The third day of Symposium features: "Strategists Speak '17: Rising Rates & Fed RRP" with Joseph Abate of Barclays, Mark Cabana of Bank of America Merrill Lynch, and Garrett Sloan of Wells Fargo Securities; "Treasury & Agency Supply Outlook," with John Dolan of the U.S. Dept. of Treasury, Dave Messerly of the FHLBanks Office of Finance, and Dan Davis of CastleOak Securities; and, the "Pros & Cons of Ultra-Short Bond Funds" with Michael Morin of Fidelity and Morten Olsen of Northern Trust AM. Finally, the last session is entitled, "Money Fund Trading, Technology & Data," with Peter Crane presenting on the latest money fund information tools, and featuring Sabrina Hartzog of Citi on the portal marketplace, and James Morris of Investortools on money fund trading and compliance software.

We hope you'll join us in Atlanta this June! We'd like to encourage attendees, speakers and sponsors to register and make hotel reservations early. (Note that the conference attendee list will only be given out to those staying at the conference hotel, and that we still have room for 2 more exhibitors.)

In other conference news, we're making final preparations for the inaugural Crane's Bond Fund Symposium, which will take place March 23-24 at the Boston Hyatt Regency. (Note: Today is the last day for discounted hotel reservations.) Bond Fund Symposium will bring together over 100 ultra-short bond fund and "enhanced cash" professionals next month in Boston. We hope to see you there!

Also, we'll be hosting Crane's 5th annual "offshore" money fund event, European Money Fund Symposium, in Paris, Sept. 25-26, 2017. This website (www.euromfs.com) will be live soon. (Contact us to inquire about sponsoring or speaking.) Finally, our next Money Fund University "basic training" event is tentatively scheduled for Jan. 18-19, 2018, in Providence, R.I. Watch www.cranedata.com in coming months for more details on these events, or visit the bottom of our "Content" page for past and future conference materials.

In other news, Invesco Fixed Income published a new "Global Fixed Income Strategy," which contains a brief entitled, "US government money market securities may offer greater value than bank deposits." Written by Analyst Lucas Simmons, it says, "With two fed rate hikes since 2015 and expectations for more in 2017, Invesco Global Liquidity believes investors may be better rewarded by US government money market securities than by US bank deposits. Since the Fed begin raising the target federal funds rate, bank deposit rates have not increased as quickly. Indeed many banks have indicated that they do not intend to increase deposit rates significantly in the near term. As a result, we believe that investors interested in benefiting from rising short-term interest rates may be better served by investing in US government money market securities rather than US bank deposits."

The brief continues, "US banks do not need to increase deposit rates aggressively in this interest-rate cycle. Since the global financial crisis, US banks have enjoyed a surge in deposits due to new regulations designed to bolster their liquidity positions. Consumer preferences for federally insured bank deposits (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation insurance) have also boosted demand. As a result, a common measure of bank liquidity, the deposit-to-loan ratio, has risen sharply."

It adds, "Consequently, banks could be less aggressive in competing for a deposit than they have in past hiking cycles. Indeed, Invesco Global Liquidity expects banks to keep deposit rates low in an effort to increase net interest margins and boost profitability. Therefore, as short-term interest rates rise, we expect bank deposit rates to lag US government money market rates."

Finally, Invesco writes, "We believe institutional investors may be better served by government money market securities than bank deposits. US government money market securities, such as US Treasury bills, may offer the potential to capture higher interest rates as they adjust with Fed Policy. As seen in figure 2, US 3-month Treasury bill yields have already surpassed bank deposit rates."

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