What is it about?

This theoretical study examines whether funds managers' intrinsic ability can differ from their risk tolerance. Formal predictions reveal this indeed is the case, that is, risk tolerance and intrinsic ability can be dichotomous characteristics of funds managers. Regardless of dichotomy between risk tolerance and ability, structure of fund returns generated by ability or risk tolerance can coincide resulting in returns that are positively skewed U-shaped functions of either of ability or risk tolerance.

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Why is it important?

Formal proofs demonstrate that the conventional "invest in positive alpha funds" investment advice can yield lower returns than a strategy that invests in zero or negative alpha funds. Study demonstrates superiority of positive alpha strategies is not independent of current structure of returns within fund markets.


Study demonstrates market structures that obtain within fund markets such as mutual funds or venture capital markets are confluence of interactions between demonstrations of funds managers' ability and risk tolerance. Deeper understanding of these interactions likely improves capacity of investors to pick winning funds.

Dr Oghenovo A Obrimah
Fisk University

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This page is a summary of: Funds Managers' Risk Tolerance vis-a-vis Ability: Market Structure Implications, SSRN Electronic Journal, January 2017, Elsevier,
DOI: 10.2139/ssrn.3018617.
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