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Understanding Alternative Investments

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Alternative investing is one way to broaden portfolio diversification to help reduce risk and potentially increase returns. Diversification can lead to alternative investments as obscure as coins, diamonds, comic books, rare earth, art or even wine. Post financial-crisis, it seems to have taken on a new life with many clients looking for ways to lower volatility and protect capital, while at the same time increase income. The rate at which investors are putting money into alternative investments is making them mainstream, yet education remains one of the toughest obstacles. Current asset allocation models frequently fail to include alternative investments despite the known benefits and merits of adding them to a portfolio.

In Understanding Alternative Investments, veteran financier Stephen Todd Walker, addresses the most pressing issues by helping investors and advisors understand how to apply new risk measurements to an alternative portfolio. Through his 25+ years of expertise in finance, Walker explains how to go about carefully selecting the best alternative investments and the right time to invest in them, including real estate, hedge funds, private equity, venture capital, commodities, and more. Features of the book include:
  • Historical data showing alternative investments on the upswing
  • Tools to help identify and evaluate alternative investments
  • Insights into 'wave theory' of alternative investments and how it works
  • The pros and cons of alternative investments
The market for alternative investments is growing and will play an even more important role than it has in the past; these investments can be rewarding but it takes time and experience to master them. This book shows the merits of owning alternative investments and how investors might create better, more diversified portfolios.
Pension plan sponsors, endowments and foundations as well as pension consultants have all warmed up to managed futures in a significant way over the past decade. This book clearly shows the merits of managed futures and how they can be used to further diversify a portfolio. The attractive long term risk adjusted (& non-correlated) returns are one important way institutions can generate much needed alpha in an era where much more horsepower is required beyond the traditional paradigm of stocks and bonds.
-David Lerman, Senior Director, Asset Managers, Products and Services, CME Group