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Alignment of interest

The mechanism for sharing risks via fees in the pension industry is weak, says Fiona Trafford-Walker. Asset-based fees don't reflect managers’ ability, and clients don't get enough of the benefit of scale.
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Quality factor explained by profitability: Robert Novy-Marx

Among academic classifications, and the subsequent implementation of factor investing, “quality” is one of the newer areas of investigation. Robert Novy-Marx, the Lori and Alan S. Zekelman Professor of Finance at the University of Rochester, is leading the charge on the academic justification of quality as a factor, although he has a “jaded scepticism” about […]
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Factors the same in credit and equities

Robeco will launch the world’s first multi-factor credit fund, after academic research by its quantitative research team reveals that size, low-risk, value and momentum factors have economically meaningful and statistically significant risk-adjusted returns in the corporate bond market. David Blitz, co-head of quantitative strategies at Robeco in Rotterdam, tells Amanda White why an active approach makes […]

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 […]