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The Trend is Our Friend: Risk Parity, Momentum and Trend Following in Global Asset Allocation

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  • Andrew Clare
  • James Seaton
  • Peter N. Smith
  • Stephen Thomas

Abstract

We examine the effectiveness of applying a trend following methodology to global asset allocation between equities, bonds, commodities and real estate. The application of trend following offers a substantial improvement in risk-adjusted performance compared to traditional buy-and-hold portfolios. We also find it to be a superior method of asset allocation than risk parity. Momentum and trend following have often been used interchangeably although the former is a relative concept and the latter absolute. By combining the two we find that one can achieve the higher return levels associated with momentum portfolios but with much reduced volatility and drawdowns due to trend following. We observe that a flexible asset allocation strategy that allocates capital to the best performing instruments irrespective of asset class enhances this further.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of York in its series Discussion Papers with number 12/25.

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Date of creation: Sep 2012
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Handle: RePEc:yor:yorken:12/25

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Keywords: Risk parity; trend following; momentum; global asset allocation; equities; bonds; commodities; real estate;

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  1. Lukas Menkhoff & Lucio Sarno & Maik Schmeling & Andreas Schrimpf, 2012. "Currency Momentum Strategies," Working Paper Series 09_12, The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis.
  2. Menkhoff, Lukas, 2010. "The use of technical analysis by fund managers: International evidence," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(11), pages 2573-2586, November.
  3. Grinblatt, Mark & Moskowitz, Tobias J., 2004. "Predicting stock price movements from past returns: the role of consistency and tax-loss selling," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(3), pages 541-579, March.
  4. Szakmary, Andrew C. & Shen, Qian & Sharma, Subhash C., 2010. "Trend-following trading strategies in commodity futures: A re-examination," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 409-426, February.
  5. Carhart, Mark M, 1997. " On Persistence in Mutual Fund Performance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(1), pages 57-82, March.
  6. Fuertes, Ana-Maria & Miffre, Joëlle & Rallis, Georgios, 2010. "Tactical allocation in commodity futures markets: Combining momentum and term structure signals," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(10), pages 2530-2548, October.
  7. Jegadeesh, Narasimhan & Titman, Sheridan, 1993. " Returns to Buying Winners and Selling Losers: Implications for Stock Market Efficiency," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 48(1), pages 65-91, March.
  8. Fung, William & Hsieh, David A, 2001. "The Risk in Hedge Fund Strategies: Theory and Evidence from Trend Followers," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 14(2), pages 313-41.
  9. Friesen, Geoffrey C. & Weller, Paul A. & Dunham, Lee M., 2009. "Price trends and patterns in technical analysis: A theoretical and empirical examination," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 33(6), pages 1089-1100, June.
  10. Banerjee, Anurag & Hung, Chi-Hsiou, 2011. "Informed momentum trading versus uninformed "naive" investors strategies," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 35(11), pages 3077-3089, November.
  11. Miffre, Joelle & Rallis, Georgios, 2007. "Momentum strategies in commodity futures markets," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 1863-1886, June.
  12. Narasimhan Jegadeesh, 2001. "Profitability of Momentum Strategies: An Evaluation of Alternative Explanations," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(2), pages 699-720, 04.
  13. Shynkevich, Andrei, 2012. "Performance of technical analysis in growth and small cap segments of the US equity market," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 193-208.
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Cited by:
  1. Andrew Clare & James Seaton & Peter N. Smith & Stephen Thomas, 2014. "European Equity Investing through the Financial Crisis: Can Risk Parity, Momentum or Trend Following Help to Reduce Tail Risk?," Discussion Papers 14/02, Department of Economics, University of York.
  2. Andrew Clare & James Seaton & Peter N. Smith & Stephen Thomas, 2014. "When Growth Beats Value: Removing Tail Risk From Global Equity Momentum Strategies," Discussion Papers 14/09, Department of Economics, University of York.

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