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When to Put All Your Eggs in One Basket.....When Diversification Increases Portfolio Risk!

  • Cornelis A. Los

Portfolio diversification may not always lower the portfolio risk, but may actually increase it. It depends on the long memory and distributional stability characteristics of the underlying rates of return. This disturbing result is based on the theoretical Fama- Samuelson proposition of 1965-67. However, there exists now ample empirical evidence for such peculiar results, since most financial return series show long memory, e.g., the S&P500 Index return series. Illiquid real estate and bank loan values are sometimes subject to catastrophic discontinuities. Adding these assets to the portfolio may increase its risk drastically.

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File URL: http://128.118.178.162/eps/fin/papers/0411/0411037.pdf
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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Finance with number 0411037.

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Length: 7 pages
Date of creation: 16 Nov 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpfi:0411037
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 7
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://128.118.178.162

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  1. Samuelson, Paul A., 1967. "Efficient Portfolio Selection for Pareto-Lévy Investments," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(02), pages 107-122, June.
  2. Eugene F. Fama, 1965. "Portfolio Analysis in a Stable Paretian Market," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 11(3), pages 404-419, January.
  3. Harry Markowitz, 1952. "Portfolio Selection," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 7(1), pages 77-91, 03.
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