Ray Dalio is an American billionaire hedge fund manager and philanthropist who has served as co-chief investment officer of Bridgewater Associates since 1985. As a thought leader and industry pioneer, he also founded the world’s largest hedge fund and firmly advocates that “diversification is a wonderful, mechanical, good way to reduce risk without reducing expected return.”
So – what’s the next best thing for investors in our current market turmoil?
Whilst it’s been a long standing ‘good-practice’ in financial planning and investment management, investors still find themselves overloading in areas as they follow market sentiment and forget to apply a diverse strategy to their stock, fund or asset class purchasing decisions.
Remember – much of our investment behaviour is highly emotional, no matter how hard we try to convince ourselves otherwise. With global politics, world markets and local business in a growing state of volatility, emotions are running high.
In an article for Business Insider, Dalio says that “… investors shouldn’t subscribe to the “dangerous bias” that the past is representative of the future, he said. “If you go through history, when you have some of these conflicts, you might have a different result.”
Depending on where you find yourself today, you might be hearing loud messages of ‘invest in property’, ‘buy gold’, ‘invest offshore’ or ‘switch to cash’. The markets are changing constantly and Dalio’s counsel is now more prevalent than ever.
“The most important thing investors can do to manage this risk is to diversify by asset class, country, and currency. Diversification doesn’t cost you anything. Because when your asset classes are going to – if you balance them right – have approximately equal expected risk-adjusted returns, so you can balance them, because they all compete with each other, so not one is necessarily clearly better,” he said to Business Insider.
The exciting thing about investing is there is always opportunity – we just have to know where to look, and cover our bases. There are no quick wins or shortcuts to growing our wealth.