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Markowitz versus Regime Switching: An Empirical Approach

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  • Immanuel Seidl

Abstract

This article discusses an adjusted regime switching model in the context of portfolio optimization and compares the attained portfolio weights and the performance to a classical mean-variance set-up as introduced by Markowitz (1952). The model postulates different asset price dynamics under different regimes, and jumps between regimes are driven by a Markov process. For examples, 'bear' and 'bull' markets could be such regimes. Given a particular regime, portfolio weights are set based on the conditional means and variancecovariance structure of the asset dynamics. The model is evaluated in an out-of-sample period of the last three years with a moving window and a forecast of only one period. It is found that with the adjusted regime switching portfolio selection algorithm as applied here, the performance of the optimal portfolio is highly improved even where portfolio weights are constrained to realistic values.

Suggested Citation

  • Immanuel Seidl, 2012. "Markowitz versus Regime Switching: An Empirical Approach," The Review of Finance and Banking, Academia de Studii Economice din Bucuresti, Romania / Facultatea de Finante, Asigurari, Banci si Burse de Valori / Catedra de Finante, vol. 4(1), pages 033-043, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:rfb:journl:v:04:y:2012:i:1:p:033-043
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Harry Markowitz, 1952. "Portfolio Selection," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 7(1), pages 77-91, March.
    2. Andrew Ang & Geert Bekaert, 2002. "International Asset Allocation With Regime Shifts," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 15(4), pages 1137-1187.
    3. Goldfeld, Stephen M. & Quandt, Richard E., 1973. "A Markov model for switching regressions," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 3-15, March.
    4. Campbell, Rachel & Koedijk, Kees & Kofman, Paul, 2002. "Increased Correlation in Bear markets: A Downside Risk Perspective," CEPR Discussion Papers 3172, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Pelletier, Denis, 2006. "Regime switching for dynamic correlations," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 131(1-2), pages 445-473.
    6. Levy, Haim, 1969. "A Utility Function Depending on the First Three Moments: Comment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 24(4), pages 715-719, September.
    7. Benoit Mandelbrot, 2015. "The Variation of Certain Speculative Prices," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: THE WORLD SCIENTIFIC HANDBOOK OF FUTURES MARKETS, chapter 3, pages 39-78 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    8. Ang, Andrew & Bekaert, Geert, 2002. "Regime Switches in Interest Rates," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(2), pages 163-182, April.
    9. Hamilton, James D, 1989. "A New Approach to the Economic Analysis of Nonstationary Time Series and the Business Cycle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 357-384, March.
    10. Frauendorfer, Karl & Jacoby, Ulrich & Schwendener, Alvin, 2007. "Regime switching based portfolio selection for pension funds," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(8), pages 2265-2280, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Wasim Ahmad & N. Bhanumurthy & Sanjay Sehgal, 2015. "Regime dependent dynamics and European stock markets: Is asset allocation really possible?," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 42(1), pages 77-107, February.

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