Research

Investment Perspectives



April 2017

An Active/Passive Decision Framework
Few investment topics invite more debate than the issue of active versus passive management. Investors pursuing active management seek to outperform comparative indices by investing in funds that attempt to exploit market inefficiencies. Passive investors, on the other hand...

November 2016

Active Management Performance Cycles
One of the most fundamental decisions for institutional investors is the extent to which to use active managers as opposed to low-cost index funds. The primary argument for using active managers is their ability to provide investors with enhanced returns. However, realization of this benefit assumes...

November 2016

Global Real Estate Market Newsletter
As the saying goes, "the more things change, the more they stay the same." The world continues to function despite recent volatility, with current concerns led by the uncertain long-term impact of Brexit on the global economy. Right on Brexit's heels are....

July 2016

A Primer On Diversification For Institutional Investors
Diversification is a fundamental component of an institutional investment strategy; however, determining the optimal approach invites considerable debate. This debate has intensified recently due to the fact that, for an extended period of time, portfolios with a traditional 60/40 allocation to US equity and US fixed income have outperformed many portfolios that include a broader set of asset classes...

March 2016

Global Real Estate Market Newsletter
While many of the same cautious themes persist from the prior issue, we are now approaching investment opportunities with increased skepticism as we are six months further into the cycle. As shown below in Figure 1, private core U.S. real estate continues to outperform other asset classes...

September 2015

Impact of Money Market Regulatory Reform
On July 23, 2014, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) adopted amendments to rules governing U.S. money market funds. The amendments were designed to address unexpected distress experienced by money market funds during the global financial crisis of 2008 and 2009. During this period, one fund (the Reserve Primary Fund) became only the second money market fund in history to "break the buck"...

August 2015

Global Real Estate Market Newsletter
Welcome to the inaugural issue of the RVK Global Real Estate Market Newsletter. The intent of this letter is to efficiently and concisely communicate what's on our mind. This may include current opportunities and where we view attractive relative value, real estate strategies we find...

June 2015

Using Active Share to Evaluate Single and Multi Manager Portfolios
In recent years, a relatively new statistic, called "active share," has attracted considerable attention from members of the investment community. Active share is a statistic that describes the degree to which the holdings of an investment fund differ from the holdings of the fund's benchmark. Investors and academics have produced numerous papers on active share; some portray it as...

February 2015

Strategies to Control Defined Contribution Plan Fees
In 1974, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”) was passed in order to establish a set of governing laws and regulations to protect the interests of participants in employee benefit plans. Since then, the responsibilities of defined contribution (DC) plan fiduciaries have continually evolved, and plan expenses in particular have become heavily scrutinized...

October 2014

Marketable Alternatives
Marketable alternative investments are generally used by investors to enhance portfolio diversification due to their tendency to exhibit low return correlations (and often low volatility) relative to traditional asset classes. Although the investment objectives, constraints, and risk tolerances of institutional investors vary substantially...

July 2014

Investing In Opportunistic Credit
The financial panic of 2008 and early 2009 sparked massive losses across virtually all asset classes. As is common during such periods, the crisis also created extraordinary buying opportunities—many of which involved traditional fixed income sectors. While the subsequent recovery...

May 2014

Framework for Evaluating Fixed Income Portfolio Structures
Nearly five years have passed since the end of the U.S. financial crisis. With the economy and capital markets appearing to stabilize over the past six months, the Federal Reserve has responded with a gradual reduction of its quantitative easing (QE) program, which is already leading...

April 2014

Best Practices for Investment Governance
Over the past several years, academics, investment professionals, and investment firms have produced numerous papers about investment governance best practices. Interest in this topic is fueled by the fact that past research suggests that effective governance may add as much as 100 to 300 basis points to investment returns.1 While existing research...