Diversification

800 Years on the Financial Markets

17.May 2024

Have we mentioned, that we love history? Probably more than just once. What we like on the academic studies which use longterm data is that they offer a bird-like view on the financial markets. The daily noise and ebbs and flows retreat into the background and macroeconomic and geopolitical trends emerge. This top-down analysis helps to design the asset allocation or shape the overall structure of the portfolio of systematic trading strategies that may then trade on the higher frequency. Bryan Taylor’s paper offers a treasure of tables and charts depicting over 800 years of history of returns of global stocks, bonds and bills.

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Private vs. Public Investment Strategies

1.May 2024

Choosing the right investment strategy plays a crucial in portfolio allocation decisions, particularly when considering both private and public asset classes. While the reported performance of public assets typically matches their real-world performance, the same cannot be said for private assets due to the complexities of fund selection, commitment pacing, and return on uncalled and uncommitted capital. Fortunately, there are ways to incorporate public and private asset classes into one portfolio optimally. One example is the recent paper written by Xiang Xu, which introduces the Fair Comparison (FC) framework, which provides a methodology to measure the real-world performance of private investment strategies.

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Portfolio Diversification Including Art as an Alternative Asset

15.March 2024

Alternative investment assets (also such as rare vintage and collectible items, expensive old high-quality alcohol, discontinued fashion, etc.) are a hit among wealthy investors, even though it is not easy to obtain direct or indirect exposure to diversified art investment(s) in a traditional finance kind of way. However, alternative assets are helpful in portfolio diversification as they last (if stored properly), usually appreciate in value (but sometimes not very predictably), and have a low correlation to traditional assets like stocks, real estate, gold, or fixed-income securities. Although alternative assets are highly illiquid and sometimes very challenging to value correctly, researchers are interested in them. We will closely look at one of the research papers that investigates the role of art in the portfolio, utilizing mean-variance optimization and less-used STL decomposition.

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How Much Bitcoin Should We Allocate To the Portfolio?

26.February 2024

After years of waiting, the recent launch of spot Bitcoin ETFs marked a significant milestone in the cryptocurrency market, making Bitcoin even more accessible for investors. Spot ETFs provide a convenient and regulated way to gain exposure to Bitcoin without the need to hold the digital asset directly, potentially attracting a broader range of market participants. Many investors are waiting to see this change’s long-term impact on the cryptocurrency’s price while putting their faith in the potentially significant returns from Bitcoin within their investment portfolios. These events are taking place after two significant milestones in Bitcoin’s history – the introduction of BTC futures in 2017 and the launch of the BTC futures ETF (BITO) in 2021. While examining the whole history of Bitcoin may give the impression of a new super asset, we need to set realistic expectations. What have all these historical changes brought, and what lessons can we learn from similar occurrences involving other assets throughout history?

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Pragmatic Asset Allocation Model for Semi-Active Investors

11.January 2024

The primary motivation behind our study stems from an observation of the Global Tactical Asset Allocation (GTAA) strategies throughout the existing papers – the majority of them require relatively frequent rebalancing from the point of view of the ordinary investor. Portfolio rebalancing is usually done on a weekly or monthly basis, and while this period may seem overly boring and slow for the majority of traders (who like to trade on intraday or daily basis), fans of GTAA strategies are not traders; they are investors. Of course, some like to follow the ebbs and flows of the market. But a lot of investors just want to have a life. The financial market is not their hobby. However, on the other hand, they also do not want to hold just the passive buy & hold portfolio. Recognizing the demand for the semi-active strategy, we introduce our novel Pragmatic Asset Allocation.

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Estimating Stocks-Bonds Correlation from Long-Term Data

29.October 2023

There are a few concepts in the world of finance that are taken for granted, and one of them is the free lunch of diversification. Investors like to mix stocks and bonds into a simple allocation portfolio and hope for better outcomes than investing in just one asset. But the favorable return-to-risk profile of those asset allocation strategies relies on the low correlation between those two asset classes, which, as we will see from today’s contribution, we can’t take for granted. We hope the recent study sheds more light on this topic.

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