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Optimal Asset Rebalancing in the Presence of Transactions Costs


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  • Hayne E. Leland

    (University of California, Berkeley)


We examine the optimal trading strategy for an investment fund which wishes to maintain two assets in fixed proportions, e.g. 60/40 in stocks and bonds. Transactions costs are assumed to be proportional to the amount of each asset traded. We show that the optimal policy involves a band about the target stock proportion. As long as the actual stock/bond ratio remains inside this band, no trading should occur. If the ratio goes outside the band, trading should be undertaken to move the ratio to the nearest edge of the band. We compute the optimal band and resulting annual turnover and tracking error of the optimal policy, as a function of transactions costs, asset volatility, the target asset mix, and other parameters. We show how changes in transactions costs and other parameters affect the size of the no-trade band, turnover, and tracking error. Compared to a quarterly rebalancing strategy an example demonstrates that the optimal strategy can reduce turnover by almost 50 percent.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Finance with number 9610004.

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Date of creation: 23 Oct 1996
Date of revision: 29 Oct 1996
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpfi:9610004

Note: 21pp; WordPerfect/WIN file
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  1. Dumas, Bernard & Luciano, Elisa, 1991. " An Exact Solution to a Dynamic Portfolio Choice Problem under Transactions Costs," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 46(2), pages 577-95, June.
  2. Hayne E. Leland., 1984. "Option Pricing and Replication with Transactions Costs," Research Program in Finance Working Papers 144, University of California at Berkeley.
  3. Dumas, Bernard, 1991. "Super contact and related optimality conditions," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 675-685, October.
  4. Hayne Leland and Gregory Connor., 1995. "Optimal Cash Management for Investment Funds," Research Program in Finance Working Papers RPF-244, University of California at Berkeley.
  5. Constantinides, George M, 1986. "Capital Market Equilibrium with Transaction Costs," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 842-62, August.
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