Joachim Klement, CFA, is a trustee of the CFA Institute Research Foundation and offers regular commentary at Klement on Investing. Previously, he was CIO at Wellershoff & Partners Ltd., and before that, head of the UBS Wealth Management Strategic Research team and head of equity strategy for UBS Wealth Management. Klement studied mathematics and physics at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich, Switzerland, and Madrid, Spain, and graduated with a master’s degree in mathematics. In addition, he holds a master’s degree in economics and finance.
One of the symptoms of middle age is that you start to give advice to younger people on what your experience has taught you about life. So Joachim Klement, CFA, puts his imaginary pipe into his mouth, adjusts his glasses, and explains why keeping it simple might be the most important "dumb alpha" lesson he has learned in his investing career.
Instead of creating complex multilinear factor regressions, investors can outperform the market simply by selecting the stocks with the smoothest return profile — good, old, boring stocks that show no drama and a lot of stability, writes Joachim Klement, CFA.
Joachim Klement, CFA, demonstrates a method for beating average hedge fund returns — without the fees. It's the best dumb alpha can offer: a simple, low-cost investment strategy that outperforms more sophisticated and expensive alternatives.
Carry trades profit from investor herding just like momentum strategies. As more and more investors pour money into high-interest currencies and borrow on low-interest currencies, the demand for the former rises. This herding behavior can continue for quite some time, but it comes to a halt when investors are no longer willing to invest in high-interest currencies.
With short-term forecasts, random walks tend to outperform the accumulated wisdom of professional forecasters. That estimation uncertainty is not reduced for long-term forecasts either, because mean reversion cannot overcome the effects of compound interest. Luckily, there is a range of techniques, from simple to sophisticated, that can help long-term investors with this challenge.
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