The Latest
Research

The real factor exposures in “smart beta” indexes

Investors relying on nomenclature of smart beta indexes as an accurate reflection of their factor exposures should take a closer look. New research, using a “factor efficiency ratio”, finds that most smart beta indexes are unable to provide desired factor exposures without taking on substantial unintended exposures. Importantly the paper finds that some smart beta […]
Research

Breaking down emerging markets active returns

New research by MSCI shows a rare insight into whether the factor phenomenon, driving development market equities beta, is at play in emerging markets. The research uses the Barra Emerging Markets Equity Model to look at the drivers of performance of emerging markets, and analyses the returns of active emerging market managers to identify the […]
Analysis

Why long-horizon investors should adopt factor-based asset allocation

Long-horizon investors can withstand macro-economic volatility and so should tilt towards strategies that are exposed to that, including value, small cap and momentum. Oleg Ruban, vice president in the applied research team at MSCI says this validates factor-investing and factor-based asset allocation for these investors.   Appropriate asset allocation requires explicit attention be paid to […]
Investor Profile

Japan’s GPIF allocates to smart beta

The $1.3 trillion Government Pension Investment Fund of Japan will use factor investing, or smart beta, as a third way of implementing equity mandates, alongside active and passive, following a six-month research project conducted by MSCI that investigated how to best implement the growing interest in factor exposures.   The research project conducted by MSCI […]
INVESTMENT THINK TANK 2014

When does momentum shift to a risky bet?

Two finance professors at the London School of Economics have introduced a new way to measure the amount of risk arbitrage in markets. Their novel measure, dubbed “comomentum”, exploits time variation in how momentum stocks excessively “comove” together to reveal how crowded the classic price momentum trading strategy is at any point in time. They […]
Analysis

Breaking bad habits: why investors aren’t good at asset allocation

Institutional investors act like momentum investors, chasing returns, even over longer time horizons according to Asset Allocation and Bad Habits, a new research paper that looks at the impact of past returns on asset allocation. The paper commissioned by Rotman-ICPM and authored by Amit Goyal professor at Univeriste de Lausanne, Andrew Ang professor at Columbia Business […]
Analysis

Pushing smart beta further

The rise of smart beta has just got another boost thanks to a study commissioned by Norway’s ministry of finance for its Government Pension Fund Global. It asked index provider MSCI to look into the feasibility of running smart beta strategies for large portfolios. Very few institutions with the size of GPFG’s $400-billion equity portfolio […]
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