Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Lifetime financial advice

The Research Foundation of the CFA Institute has issued a new monograph on Lifetime Financial Advice - Human Capital, Asset Allocation and Insurance by four distinguished authors: Roger G. Ibbotson, Moshe A. Milevsky, Peng Chen CFA and Kevin X. Zhu. For a summary, let me quote from the foreword:
The largest asset that most human beings have, at least when they are young, is their human capital— that is, the present value of their expected future labor income. Human capital interacts with traditional investments, such as stocks, bonds, and real estate, through the correlation structure. But human capital interacts in even more interesting and profitable ways with life insurance and annuities because these assets have payoffs linked to the holder’s longevity. The authors of Lifetime Financial Advice present a framework for understanding and managing all of these assets holistically.

This complex issue is approached in a systematic, model based fashion from the perspective of the individual investor. It may not, therefore, hold as much interest to the traditional institutional investor managing retirement monies collectively. Private wealth & insurance product managers should be able to find plenty of food for thought, though. But not only them: this short monograph should be essential reading for everyone who needs to be financially literate.

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