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Optimal Asset Allocation with Factor Models for Large Portfolios

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  • M. Hashem Pesaran
  • Paolo Zaffaroni

Abstract

This paper characterizes the asymptotic behaviour, as the number of assets gets arbitrarily large, of the portfolio weights for the class of tangency portfolios belonging to the Markowitz paradigm. It is assumed that the joint distribution of asset returns is characterized by a general factor model, with possibly heteroskedastic components. Under these conditions, we establish that a set of appealing properties, so far unnoticed, characterize traditional Markowitz portfolio trading strategies. First, we show that the tangency portfolios fully diversify the risk associated with the factor component of asset return innovations. Second, with respect to determination of the portfolio weights, the conditional distribution of the factors is of second-order importance as compared to the distribution of the factor loadings and that of the idiosyncratic components. Third, although of crucial importance in forecasting asset returns, current and lagged factors do not enter the limit portfolio returns. Our theoretical results also shed light on a number of issues discussed in the literature regarding the limiting properties of portfolio weights such as the diversifiability property and the number of dominant factors.

Suggested Citation

  • M. Hashem Pesaran & Paolo Zaffaroni, 2008. "Optimal Asset Allocation with Factor Models for Large Portfolios," CESifo Working Paper Series 2326, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2326
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Fan, Jianqing & Han, Fang & Liu, Han & Vickers, Byron, 2016. "Robust inference of risks of large portfolios," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 194(2), pages 298-308.
    2. Jianqing Fan & Jingjin Zhang & Ke Yu, 2008. "Asset Allocation and Risk Assessment with Gross Exposure Constraints for Vast Portfolios," Papers 0812.2604, arXiv.org.
    3. Fan, Jianqing & Liao, Yuan & Shi, Xiaofeng, 2015. "Risks of large portfolios," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 186(2), pages 367-387.
    4. C. Gourieroux & A. Monfort, 2013. "Granularity Adjustment for Efficient Portfolios," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(4), pages 449-468, December.
    5. Lam, Clifford & Yao, Qiwei, 2012. "Factor modeling for high-dimensional time series: inference for the number of factors," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 45684, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    asset allocation; large portfolios; factor models; diversification;

    JEL classification:

    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models
    • C52 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Model Evaluation, Validation, and Selection
    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions

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