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Alternative Thinking

Ideas for a Low-Expected-Return World

There are different ways to achieve ambitious real return targets, but we think risk-balanced diversification across well-chosen return sources is the most reliable, strategic approach.

Alternative Thinking

Why Do Most Investors Choose Concentration Over Leverage?

Return-seeking investors must take risks—the question is which to take and to understand the tradeoffs involved. Most investors choose concentration risk, but we present arguments for a different approach.

Alternative Thinking

Strategic Portfolio Construction

When it comes to portfolio construction, many investors seek guidance on “putting it all together.” We discuss our systematic approach and examine how investor-specific beliefs and constraints can inform and interact with formal optimization methods.

Alternative Thinking

2017 Capital Market Assumptions For Major Asset Classes

We update our multi-year expected return assumptions for major stock and bond markets. Compared with historical averages of value metrics, we beloieve we are in a low expected return environment.

Alternative Thinking

Capital Market Assumptions for Major Asset Classes

We update our medium-term expected returns for major asset classes and explore the historical accuracy of yield-based return estimates.

Alternative Thinking

Estimating Long Term Expected Returns

Diversification is underutilized in most institutional portfolios but may improve risk-adjusted returns, active returns and total returns more reliably than concentrated positions.

Alternative Thinking

Strategic Risk Allocation

We believe investors should broadly diversify and risk balance as a starting point to asset allocation, but perhaps then mildly overweight assets with high Sharpe ratios or good diversification benefits if they can identify these.

Alternative Thinking

Good Strategies for Tough Times

Following recent losses across global equities and concern about downside risk, we take a look at the performance of different investments during the worst quarters in recent decades for stock and bond markets.

Trade Publication

The 5% Solution

Institutional investors commonly target 5% real annual returns, or 7% to 8% nominal returns.

Alternative Thinking

2020 Capital Market Assumptions for Major Asset Classes (Supplemental Estimates as of March 31, 2020)

This supplement provides a special update to our estimates of medium-term (5- to 10-year) expected returns for major asset classes. This update reflects the large changes in prices for many asset classes due to the impact of COVID-19 in Q1 2020.