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Political Risk and the Benefits of International Portfolio Diversification

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  • Jean-Claude Cosset

    (Université Laval)

  • Jean-Marc Suret

    (Université Laval)

Abstract

This paper examines the benefits of portfolio investment in the stock markets of politically risky countries by evaluating the effects of political risk constraints on the performance of a portfolio of international stocks. We use monthly data on political risk ratings and stock returns for a sample of thirty-six countries from April 1982 to December 1991. Ex-post and ex-ante portfolio selection strategies are developed to assess the gains from international diversification. Efficient sets are derived using a quadratic programming technique. We use four ex-ante portfolio strategies whose optimal portfolio weights are those of the equally weighted portfolio, the minimum-variance portfolio the certainty-equivalence tangency portfolio and the Bayes-Stein portfolio. The empirical findings, based on the performance tests of Jobson and Korkie [1981], suggest that diversification among politically risky countries improves the risk-return characteristics of optimal portfolios. However, the most striking benefit of the inclusion of politically risk countries in an international portfolio is the reduction in overall portfolio risk.© 1995 JIBS. Journal of International Business Studies (1995) 26, 301–318

Suggested Citation

  • Jean-Claude Cosset & Jean-Marc Suret, 1995. "Political Risk and the Benefits of International Portfolio Diversification," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 26(2), pages 301-318, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:pal:jintbs:v:26:y:1995:i:2:p:301-318
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    1. repec:eee:corfin:v:44:y:2017:i:c:p:167-192 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Oetzel, Jennifer M. & Bettis, Richard A. & Zenner, Marc, 2001. "Country risk measures: how risky are they?," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 128-145, July.
    3. repec:gei:journl:v:4:y:2017:i:2:p:269-285 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Jean-François L'Her & Jean-Marc Suret, 1997. "Liberalization, Political Risk and Stock Market Returns in Emerging Markets," CIRANO Working Papers 97s-15, CIRANO.
    5. Clark, Ephraim & Kassimatis, Konstantinos, 2009. "The Effect of Country Default Risk on Foreign Direct Investment," Economia Internazionale / International Economics, Camera di Commercio Industria Artigianato Agricoltura di Genova, vol. 62(3), pages 342-361.
    6. Rezayat, Fahimeh & Yavas, Burhan F., 2006. "International portfolio diversification: A study of linkages among the U.S., European and Japanese equity markets," Journal of Multinational Financial Management, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 440-458, October.
    7. Radu Tunaru & Ephraim Clark, 2005. "The Evolution of International Political Risk 1956-2001," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2005 37, Money Macro and Finance Research Group.
    8. Tsai, Ming-Chih & Su, Ying-So, 2002. "Political risk assessment on air logistics hub developments in Taiwan," Journal of Air Transport Management, Elsevier, vol. 8(6), pages 373-380.
    9. Bilson, Christopher M. & Brailsford, Timothy J. & Hooper, Vincent C., 2002. "The explanatory power of political risk in emerging markets," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 1-27.
    10. Chiou, Wan-Jiun Paul, 2008. "Who benefits more from international diversification?," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 18(5), pages 466-482, December.
    11. Wan- Jiun Paul Chiou & Chun- Pin Hsu & Chin- Wen Huang, 2013. "Development and international diversification benefits of equity markets in China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan," Chapters,in: Economic Integration Across the Taiwan Strait, chapter 5, pages 102-138 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    12. Bernardo Bortolotti & Veljko Fotak & Giacomo Loss, 2017. "Taming Leviathan: Mitigating Political Interference in Sovereign Wealth Funds’ Public Equity Investments," BAFFI CAREFIN Working Papers 1764, BAFFI CAREFIN, Centre for Applied Research on International Markets Banking Finance and Regulation, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy.
    13. Smimou, K., 2014. "International portfolio choice and political instability risk: A multi-objective approach," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 234(2), pages 546-560.
    14. Doina Chichernea, 2007. "International Portfolio Investment," Journal of Information Systems & Operations Management, Romanian-American University, vol. 1(1), pages 15-20, Winter.
    15. Clark, Ephraim & Kassimatis, Konstantinos, 2004. "Country financial risk and stock market performance: the case of Latin America," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 21-41.
    16. Chiou, Wan-Jiun Paul & Lee, Alice C. & Chang, Chiu-Chi A., 2009. "Do investors still benefit from international diversification with investment constraints?," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 448-483, May.
    17. Ho, Kwok & Milevsky, Moshe Arye & Robinson, Chris, 1999. "International equity diversification and shortfall risk," Financial Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 11-25.
    18. Tirtiroglu, Dogan & Bhabra, Harjeet S. & Lel, Ugur, 2004. "Political uncertainty and asset valuation: Evidence from business relocations in Canada," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(9), pages 2237-2258, September.
    19. Paul Chiou & Cheng-Few Lee, 2013. "Do investors still benefit from culturally home-biased diversification? An empirical study of China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 40(2), pages 341-381, February.
    20. Chiou, Wan-Jiun Paul, 2009. "Benefits of international diversification with investment constraints: An over-time perspective," Journal of Multinational Financial Management, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 93-110, April.

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