When an investor is faced with a portfolio choice problem, the number of possible assets and the various combinations and proportions in which each can be held can seem overwhelming. In this course, you’ll learn the basic principles underlying optimal portfolio construction, diversification, and risk management. You’ll start by acquiring the tools to characterize an investor’s risk and return trade-off. You will next analyze how a portfolio choice problem can be structured and learn how to solve for and implement the optimal portfolio solution. Finally, you will learn about the main pricing models for equilibrium asset prices.
Learners will:
• Develop risk and return measures for portfolio of assets
• Understand the main insights from modern portfolio theory based on diversification
• Describe and identify efficient portfolios that manage risk effectively
• Solve for portfolio with the best risk-return trade-offs
• Understand how risk preference drive optimal asset allocation decisions
• Describe and use equilibrium asset pricing models.

From the lesson

Module 4: Optimal capital allocation and portfolio choice

In this module, you will learn about mean-variance optimization: how to make optimal capital allocation and portfolio choice decisions when investors have mean-variance preferences. This was one of the ground-breaking ideas in finance. We will formally set up the investor’s portfolio choice problem and learn step-by-step how to solve for the optimal allocation and risky portfolio choice given a set of risky securities. You will also have an opportunity to apply these techniques to a numerical example. This module is slightly more technical than the others. Stick with it… you will not regret it!