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Low risk stocks highly suitable for long-term investors

15-01-2011 | Research | Pim van Vliet, PhD

A decentralized professional investment process can lead to inefficient portfolios. Low-risk equities are undervalued because active managers have a dual incentive to buy high-risk stocks. First, in order to increase the chance of expected outperformance; and second, to maximize investments under management. Empirical research shows that low-risk stocks have a superior Sharpe ratio. The low-risk effect is not attractive to long-short managers or information-ratio-driven asset managers. The best way to benefit from this effect is by implementing a strategic allocation to low-risk stocks. In this respect it is important to apply a long-term evaluation horizon.

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