Generalized Risk-Based Investing

43 Pages Posted: 24 Jan 2013 Last revised: 20 Apr 2013

See all articles by Emmanuel Jurczenko

Emmanuel Jurczenko

Glion Institute of Higher Education

Thierry Michel

Lombard Odier & Cie

Jerome Teiletche


Date Written: March 2013


Risk-based portfolio strategies - such as Minimum Variance, Maximum Diversification, Equally-Weighted and Risk Parity, to name the most famous - have become increasingly popular in the investment industry due to their return-agnostic and risk management features. In this paper, we show that these portfolio construction methodologies are special cases of a generic function defined by two specific parameters: a regularization parameter and a risk tolerance coefficient. We investigate the theoretical properties of this class of strategies, giving expressions for optimized solutions under general and specific risk models. This allows us to discuss important distinctive features of these portfolios, such as market beta, volatility, or exposure to low-vol/low-beta factors, while not being dependent on a specific sample. We illustrate these theoretical results by an empirical investigation of a large sample of international developed market stocks over the 2002-2012 period.

Keywords: Risk-Based Investing, Minimum Variance, Risk Parity, Maximum Diversification, Equal-Weight, Low-Vol Anomaly

JEL Classification: G11, D81, C60

Suggested Citation

Jurczenko, Emmanuel and Michel, Thierry and Teiletche, Jerome, Generalized Risk-Based Investing (March 2013). Available at SSRN: or

Emmanuel Jurczenko (Contact Author)

Glion Institute of Higher Education ( email )

Route de Glion 111
Montreux, 1823

Thierry Michel

Lombard Odier & Cie ( email )

11 rue de la Corraterie
Geneva, 1211

Jerome Teiletche

Unigestion ( email )

8c, avenue de Champel CP 387
CP 387
Genève 12, CH 1211

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