This page explains how to optimize returns (balance risk with reward) with a diversified investment portfolio (a basket of stocks).
To reduce risk, lower volatility and improve returns you should:
1. Diversify your holdings across industries and countries.
2. Allocate and maintain stocks in appropriate proportions.
Portfolio management comprises a number of principles and techniques. The method(s) you choose will depend upon your own objectives, priorities and abilities in investing and/or trading. The techniques listed below are ranked from most conservative to most aggressive. I do not recommend Day Trading, Short-Term Trading or Strict Buy and Hold.
Initially, allocate 50% to 70% of your portfolio to the current Strong Buys and Standard Buys listed on the Stock Picks page. This is a reasonable initial allocation whether you use Strict Buy and Hold, Buy – Sell Half – Hold Half, Minimum Turnover, or Sell at Target Price. You may want to spread your initial purchases over 6 months to a year.
To see 2 examples of these principles and techniques put into practice,
please go to Model Portfolios.
Principles and Techniques
Strict Buy and Hold
Buy the Strong Buys and Standard Buys. Then put new savings into the new recommendations as they are added to the website. Hold all of the stocks.
Buy – Sell Half – Hold Half
Buy (Strong Buys and Standard Buys). Sell half of your holdings in each stock when it doubles (usually in 3 to 5 years). Use funds raised from these sales to purchase new recommendations as they are added to the website. Hold the remaining stocks.
Buy (Strong Buys and Standard Buys). Sell stocks when they reach their previous all-time highs or a price/sales ratio of 3. You should also selectively sell stocks in which negative developments add to risk or stocks which have limited upside. Invest the proceeds from these sales into the new Stock Picks. Hold the remaining stocks.
Sell at Target Price
Buy (Strong Buys and Standard Buys). Sell stocks when they reach their target prices. Invest the proceeds in new picks. Additionally, stocks can be reduced when, through price increases, they cross the demarcation lines between ratings.
If you want to trade on short-term trends, you should select and trade stocks that have good value characteristics. That way, if a stock drops unexpectedly, you can eventually recover its value by holding it for a longer term. But I believe that the market is too fickle to consistently make money at this strategy.
This is the same kind of strategy as Short-Term Trading, but stocks are bought and sold the same day. As with Short-Term Trading, you should trade stocks that have good value characteristics. Again, I believe that this strategy does not consistently make money.
Additional Investment Considerations