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Credit Research

Adam Stern, JD

Senior Vice President
Co-Head of Research

Adam, senior vice president, is co-head of research at Breckinridge. He is a member of the firm’s Investment Committee where he is jointly responsible for setting investment strategy, asset allocation and sector weightings. Adam is also a member of the Risk Committee. In his role, Adam heads Breckinridge’s municipal research efforts, contributes regular thought leadership and performs municipal credit analysis. Adam also oversees Breckinridge’s systems for monitoring holdings and analyzing credit trends. He has been with the firm since 2009 and has over 11 years of industry experience. Prior to Breckinridge, Adam was the chief financial and policy analyst for Connecticut's Association of Towns and Cities. Adam has published two academic journal articles on the history of Connecticut's personal income tax and state budget, and his writing on municipal insolvency and public pension law has appeared in The Bond Buyer. Adam holds a B.A. from Amherst College, a J.D. from the University of Connecticut, and an M.P.A. from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University.

On his role…

“First and foremost, my role is to help our clients’ protect their capital. At Breckinridge, we are managing clients’ “safe” money, and we take that obligation very seriously. I see this goal as rule number one, rule number two and rule number three of everything we do in credit research.

On what clients value about Breckinridge…

“I believe clients value the thoughtfulness of our research, how seriously we take our research and our systematic approach, which helps ensure that we are evaluating each credit in the same way so that ratings risk is minimized across the firm.

On technology in credit research…

“We deploy technology significantly in credit research. We believe that we can uncover trends using technology in creative ways. This allows us to take advantage of what really has been a sea change in municipal financial disclosure over the last five to six years.

On what keeps him at Breckinridge…

“Culture, commitment to research and the encouragement to be innovative continue to keep me here. Analysts here are supported in thinking about credit risks differently and in pursing new approaches to research. If you do not have an environment that encourages questioning and experimentation, then you are never going to unlock any new insights—and I believe Breckinridge is very good at unlocking new insights. Our culture keeps things intellectually interesting and vigorous.

On his biggest challenge…

“The biggest challenge with the municipal market is covering the entire market. If you see one municipal credit, oftentimes, that is the only municipal credit like it. This is not always true, but it is more true than folks realize. Being able to locate the right investment, for the right client, at the right time, is a challenge. It is a fun challenge that we are always pushing the envelope on, but it is a challenge.