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Performance of passive long term investments: A longitudinal study over the relative performance of emerging- and developed markets
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
2013 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The concept of emerging markets came to surface in early 1980 and constituted of only eight countries from the two continents of South America and Asia. The globalization of financial markets has since raised the importance of emerging capital markets. We take a quantitative approach to investigate the performance of emerging markets compared to developed markets. The aim of the study is to conclude if emerging markets offers investment value and if logic in portfolio theory can be used to improve the chance of creating a relatively better performing investment. Included markets in our study are Brazil, Russia, India, China, Colombia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Egypt, Turkey and South Africa. S&P 500 is our benchmark for developed market performance. Sample period is 2002-01-01 to 2011-12-31 and monthly return data, creating 120 data points on each index.  

The weighting schemes used for the portfolios are min variance optimization, geographical location and high and low correlation. All investments are scored on performances in correlation to S&P 500, inflation adjusted growth, currency effect, Sharpe ratio, skewness and kurtosis. Rankings are done on the separate categories, on the individual overall ranking on only countries and one overall ranking on all investments.

A brief overview of the overall ranking for all investments suggest that medium performing investments are overrepresented (12/20) and the low and high is underrepresented (3/20 and 5/20). Of note is that the min variance portfolio outperforms its components, the geographical portfolios have a wide range and the high correlated portfolio outperforms the low. The country to portfolio ratio over each grade suggests only a small skew of the results. There is no low scoring portfolio but the other two ratios are close to 50/50, suggesting that on average the portfolios create diversification benefits. Furthermore normality of returns seem to be violated and then the concept of volatility as a risk measure is significantly impaired also currency risk can be of high importance, currency effects ranged from -48% to 28.7%. Assuming non-normality seems more accurate than assuming normality; therefore we need to improve on volatility as a tool to measure risk. So one direction for further research we see a need is in the concept of volatility. The initial reason for this research came from small investors’ seemingly intuitive knowledge that emerging markets are a suitable investment option. We have concluded that they in fact are, therefore we suggest that a qualitative study is conducted to investigate this seemingly natural intuition.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. , 78 p.
Keyword [en]
Terminal growth, Sharpe ratio, Currency effect, Skewness and Kurtosis, BRIC, CIVETS, Emerging Markets
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-81143OAI: diva2:653013
Educational program
Master's Programme in Finance
2013-06-04, Umeå, 14:21 (English)
Available from: 2013-10-02 Created: 2013-10-02 Last updated: 2013-10-02Bibliographically approved

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