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Learn how to invest. Featured tool. Factor investing is an investment approach that involves targeting specific drivers of return across asset classes. There are two main types of factors: macroeconomic and style.
Investing in factors can help improve portfolio outcomes, reduce volatility and enhance diversification. Learn more about the philosophy behind factor-based investment strategies and how factors can strengthen your portfolio.
Factors are the foundation of investing—broad, persistent drivers of returns across asset classes. Understand how factors work to better capture their potential for excess return and reduced risk, just as leading investors have done for decades. Global markets are made up of dozens of asset classes and millions of individual securities…making it challenging to understand what really matters for your portfolio. But there are a few important drivers that can help explain returns across asset classes.
These FACTORS are broad, persistent drivers of return that are critical to helping investors seek a range of goals from generating returns, reducing risk, to improving diversification. Today, new technologies and expanding data sources are allowing investors to access factors with ease. Factors are the foundation of investing, just as nutrients are the foundations of the food we eat.
We need carbohydrates and protein to power through the day, which we can find in different foods like bread, milk, and fruit. Similarly, knowing the factors that drive returns in your portfolio can help you to choose the right mix of assets and strategies for your needs. There are two main types of factors that drive returns. Macro factors like the pace of economic growth and the rate of inflation can help to explain returns across asset classes like equity or bond markets. Style factors can help explain returns within those asset classes. For example, Value stocks — those that have low prices relative to fundamentals — have historically generated returns greater than the broad market.
Factors can help us build portfolios that better suit individual needs; just as knowing the nutrients in your food can help your body perform. Similarly, investors looking for downside protection in a volatile market environment might add exposure to minimum volatility strategies to seek reduced risk, while Investors who are comfortable accepting increased risk might look to more return-seeking strategies like momentum.
Now — why do factors work?
When One is Penny Wise
Extensive research, including that of Nobel prize winners, has proven that certain factors have driven returns for decades. Some factors earn additional returns because they involve bearing additional risk, and may underperform in certain market regimes. Some factors arise from structural impediments, those investment restrictions or market rules that make certain investments off-limits for some investors, creating opportunities for others who can invest without those constraints. And finally, some factors capture investor behavior , that is, actions of the average investor that are not always perfectly rational.
Sometimes people want French fries instead of salad even if they are watching their cholesterol. Advancements in technology and data allow investors to take advantage of these time-tested ideas in new ways, from smart beta to enhanced factor strategies. Smart beta strategies target factors using a rules-based approach, usually with the goal of outperforming a market-cap weighted benchmark. Smart beta strategies are now widely available in ETFs and mutual funds, making factor strategies affordable and accessible to every investor.
Enhanced strategies use factors in more advanced ways - trading across multiple asset classes, sometimes investing both long and short. Investors use these enhanced factor strategies to seek absolute returns or to complement hedge fund and traditional active strategies.
BlackRock is a leader in factor investing, launching the first factor fund in and driving innovation in the category for over 40 years. Andrew Ang meets with visionaries across a range of industries to define the factors that have led to their extraordinary results. Each conversation offers unexpected perspectives, philosophies, and insights that have driven their success.
Idina : My set list is my investment portfolio. I try to achieve some balance and harmony to tell an even greater story. Andrew : Musical performers and investors each make deliberate choices as they seek to find harmony in a song or balance in a financial portfolio. Discover how to implement factors in your own portfolio with our interactive tools. Excludes fund of funds. Projections exclude the impact of beta.
BlackRock offers a range of solutions designed to tap into the potential of factors — from low-cost, efficient factor ETFs to smart beta target date funds to dynamically managed enhanced factor strategies. Consider these three investment ideas to help drive your goals:. View all single factor ETFs. View minimum volatility ETFs.
Investors can access factors in more advanced ways across multiple asset classes and long-short strategies. Morningstar Rating. View multi-asset strategies. Performance data represents past performance and does not guarantee future results. Investment return and principal value will fluctuate with market conditions and may be lower or higher when you sell your shares.
Current performance may differ from the performance shown. For standardized performance and most recent month-end performance click on the fund names above. There are two main types of factors that have driven returns: macroeconomic factors , which capture broad risks across asset classes; and style factors, which help to explain returns and risk within asset classes.
Factors have generally had low correlations with each other and therefore tended to perform well at different parts of the economic cycle.
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Institutional investors and active managers have been using factors to manage portfolios for decades. Today, data and technology have democratized factor investing to give all investors access to these historically persistent drivers of return. Smart beta is one subset of factor investing. Factor investing harnesses the power of broad and persistent drivers of return.
tolacarab.cf Factor investing can refer to macro factors which affect returns across asset classes as well as style factors which affect returns within asset classes and can be implemented with or without leverage. When it comes to factor-based strategies, investors have a lot of options. Each strategy is constructed in a unique way and may have different risks. Investors who choose long-short factor strategies will add risks associated with leverage.