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International Portfolio Diversification: Short-Term Financial Assets and Gold

Listed author(s):
  • Jorge Braga de Macedo
  • Jeffrey A. Goldstein
  • David M. Meerschwam

Using a continuous-time finance-theoretic framework, this paper presents the optimal portfolio rule of an international investor who consumes N national composite goods and who holds N domestic-currency-denominated assets with known nominal interest rates in an environment where prices of goods, assets and exchange rates follow geometric Brownian motion. It is shown that the currency portfolio rule described in Macedo (1982a) is applicable to the case where there are N assets with a known price and one asset, gold, with a random rice in terms of the numeraire. Under these assumptions, it is found that the optimal portfolio of an investor consuming goods from all major industrialized countries (according to their weight in total trade) would be dominated in March 1981 by long positions in U.S. dollars (25%), yen (17%), D. marks (16%), French francs (15%) and pounds sterling (10%). An investor consuming only U.S. goods, by contrast, would hold 96% of his optimal portfolio in U.S. dollars. Because of the covariance of exchange rates and gold, the exclusion of the latter generates substantial reshuffling. The analysis of the evolution of portfolios over time shows that shares changed dramatically at the beginning of the period and did not begin to approach their March 1981 values until the end of 1975. In the case of the yen and the pound there were oscillations throughout the period. With respect to the dollar share in the optimal portfolio of the U.S. and international investor, it is found that, in the period between late 1974 and mid-1976, a period in which the dollar is considered to have been "strong", a large decline in its optimal share took place.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 0960.

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Date of creation: Aug 1982
Publication status: published as Goldstein, Jeffrey A., Jorge Braga De Macedo, David M. Meerschwam. "International Portfolio Diversification: Short-Term Financial Assets and Gold." Exchange Rate Theory and Practice, ed. by John F. O.Bilson and Richard C. Marston. Chicago UCP. (1984), pp. 199-232 and 237- 238.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:0960
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  1. Roll, Richard, 1977. "A critique of the asset pricing theory's tests Part I: On past and potential testability of the theory," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 129-176, March.
  2. repec:bla:joares:v:7:y:1969:i:1:p:22-31 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Michael Adler and Bernard Dumas., 1982. "International Portfolio Choice and Corporation Finance: A Survey," Research Program in Finance Working Papers 132, University of California at Berkeley.
  4. Frankel, Jeffrey A., 1982. "In search of the exchange risk premium: A six-currency test assuming mean-variance optimization," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 255-274, January.
  5. Merton, Robert C., 1971. "Optimum consumption and portfolio rules in a continuous-time model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 373-413, December.
  6. Rudiger Dornbusch, 1980. "Exchange Rate Economics: Where Do We Stand?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 11(1, Tenth ), pages 143-206.
  7. Rudiger Dornbusch, 1980. "Exchange Rate Risk and the Macroeconomics of Exchange Rate Determination," NBER Working Papers 0493, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Merton, Robert C, 1969. "Lifetime Portfolio Selection under Uncertainty: The Continuous-Time Case," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 51(3), pages 247-257, August.
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