Executive Education - November 26, 2008

CFA Institute and EDHEC Business School Extend Partnership to Alternative Investment

CFA Institute and the EDHEC Risk and Asset Management Research Centre have extended their partnership in executive education events to now include an annual course on alternative investment.

The newly introduced Alternative Asset Allocation Seminar presents advanced techniques to optimise asset allocation and risk management when alternative assets–such as real estate, commodities, private equity, hedge funds, or emerging categories like infrastructure and volatility–are added to institutional portfolios. It provides senior investment professionals an opportunity to gain an in-depth understanding of the benefits of including alternative investments into multi-style multi-class portfolios and acquire the tools to maximise these advantages while controlling for market, liquidity, and operational risks.

"Alternative investments can provide novel patterns of returns and bring diversification, inflation-hedging, and downside equity risk protection to traditional portfolios," says Frédéric Ducoulombier, Director of EDHEC Asset Management Education. "Against the backdrop of the current turmoil, it is not completely surprising to find out that European and North American pension funds surveyed last month plan to further reduce their exposure to equities to free cash to invest in alternatives1."

"However, investing successfully with alternatives requires understanding their unique return dynamics, implementing operational risk controls and keeping extreme risks under check, and using approaches which optimise the benefits of their integration into institutional investors’ portfolios," he adds.

The seminar explores the latest research advances and examines best industry practices; it features instructors who combine academic expertise with industry experience:

  • François-Serge Lhabitant, PhD, Chief Investment Officer at Kedge Capital and Associate Professor of Finance at EDHEC Business School will look at the risks and return drivers of alternative investments and present quantitative and qualitative techniques to build more resilient multi-style multi-class portfolios and manage the market as well as the liquidity, valuation and counterparty risks of alternative assets.
  • Lionel Martellini, PhD, Scientific Director of the EDHEC Risk and Asset Management Research Centre, will present financial engineering techniques to improve risk budget management when alternative investments are added to asset management and liability-driven investment programmes.
  • Nicolas Mougeot, PhD, Managing Director and European Head of Global Equity Derivatives Strategy Group at Deutsche Bank, will explore the potential of volatility products and strategies for portfolio diversification and hedging of downside equity risk.
  • Christophe Reech, Chairman and founder of Reech AiM will explain how his group uses property derivatives for synthetic allocation, risk management, and alpha strategies.
  • Etienne Rouzeau, PhD, Director and Head of Allocation and Risks at Allianz Alternative Asset Management will present the state-of-the art techniques he implements to control extreme risks in funds of funds.

The inaugural Alternative Asset Allocation Seminar will be held 17-19 March at The Dorchester hotel in London. To participate, contact Mélanie Ruiz, EDHEC Asset Management Education: AMeducation@edhec-risk.com or +33 0 4 93 18 78 19.


1 Source: Pension Funds Set To Flee Equities, Steve Johnson, Financial Times, Monday, November 10, 2008.

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(1) http://www.edhec-risk.com/AIeducation/Alternative%20Investment%20Seminars/Alternative_AA_Seminar