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Seven Sins in Portfolio Optimization

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  • Thomas Schmelzer
  • Raphael Hauser

Abstract

Although modern portfolio theory has been in existence for over 60 years, fund managers often struggle to get its models to produce reliable portfolio allocations without strongly constraining the decision vector by tight bands of strategic allocation targets. The two main root causes to this problem are inadequate parameter estimation and numerical artifacts. When both obstacles are overcome, portfolio models yield excellent allocations. In this paper, which is primarily aimed at practitioners, we discuss the most common mistakes in setting up portfolio models and in solving them algorithmically.

Suggested Citation

  • Thomas Schmelzer & Raphael Hauser, 2013. "Seven Sins in Portfolio Optimization," Papers 1310.3396, arXiv.org.
  • Handle: RePEc:arx:papers:1310.3396
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    File URL: http://arxiv.org/pdf/1310.3396
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ledoit, Olivier & Wolf, Michael, 2004. "A well-conditioned estimator for large-dimensional covariance matrices," Journal of Multivariate Analysis, Elsevier, pages 365-411.
    2. Harry Markowitz, 1952. "Portfolio Selection," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 7(1), pages 77-91, March.
    3. Ledoit, Olivier & Wolf, Michael, 2003. "Improved estimation of the covariance matrix of stock returns with an application to portfolio selection," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, pages 603-621.
    4. William F. Sharpe, 1964. "Capital Asset Prices: A Theory Of Market Equilibrium Under Conditions Of Risk," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 19(3), pages 425-442, September.
    5. R.H. Tütüncü & M. Koenig, 2004. "Robust Asset Allocation," Annals of Operations Research, Springer, vol. 132(1), pages 157-187, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Boudt, Kris & Laurent, Sébastien & Lunde, Asger & Quaedvlieg, Rogier & Sauri, Orimar, 2017. "Positive semidefinite integrated covariance estimation, factorizations and asynchronicity," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 196(2), pages 347-367.

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