A General Test for SSD Portfolio Efficiency
36 Pages Posted: 28 Apr 2011 Last revised: 1 Jul 2015
Date Written: April 27, 2011
We develop a Linear Programming test to analyze if a given investment portfolio is efficient in terms of second-order stochastic dominance relative to all possible portfolios formed from a set of base assets. The test has a convenient Linear Programming structure. In case of efficiency, the primal model identifies a subgradient vector of a utility function that rationalizes the evaluated portfolio. In case of inefficiency, the dual model identifies a second, efficient portfolio that dominates the evaluated portfolio. The test gives a general necessary and sufficient condition, and can deal with general linear portfolio restrictions, inefficiency degree measures, and scenarios with unequal probabilities. We also develop a compact version of the test that substantially reduces computational burden at the cost of losing information about the dual dominating portfolio in case of inefficiency. An application to US investment benchmark data qualifies a broad stock market index as inefficient, and suggests that no risk-averse investor would hold the market index in the face of attractive premiums offered by some more concentrated investment portfolios.
Keywords: stochastic dominance, portfolio analysis, portfolio diversification, linear programming
JEL Classification: D81, G11
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation