Investment Decisions in Crises

Kovács, Erzsébet, Dömötör, Barbara Mária and Naffa, Helena (2011) Investment Decisions in Crises. Acta Oeconomica, 61 (4). pp. 389-412. DOI

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Private pension funds were thought to be an important pillar of old-age provision when they were introduced throughout (Emerging) Europe. As different as these funds are in different countries with regards to their regulation, their ownership structure and operation, none were immune to the sub-prime led financial crisis. The Hungarian private pension funds are unique amongst the defined contribution (DC) funds. With their decade old recent history, they are maturing to the payout period in a few years’ time; however, their demise appears ever more realistic by means of political decision. This makes uncovering their investment policy during the crises very timely. Examining such a period is of importance in shedding light on the behaviour of traditional financial concepts in periods of stress. In this paper, we assess the optimality of diversification, hedging and short sales decision possibilities of the Hungarian Pension Funds in the equity investments environment. Was the net asset value (NAV) erosion suffered by the Hungarian private pension funds a result of their investment decision? We examine this question of diversification through a hypothetical simulation of model investment portfolios. Our results show that international diversification yields better risk-adjusted returns only in case of perfect hindsight of future market movements. The high correlation of the stock indices globally in times of crises limits the benefits of diversification.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Hungary, financial crises, portfolio performance, pension funds
JEL classification:G01 - Financial Crises
G23 - Pension Funds; Non-bank Financial Institutions; Financial Instruments; Institutional Investors
G38 - Corporate Finance and Governance: Government Policy and Regulation
ID Code:5820
Deposited By: MTMT SWORD
Deposited On:23 Jul 2020 18:48
Last Modified:23 Jul 2020 18:48

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