Bitcoin and Portfolio Diversification: Portfolio Optimization Approach
19 Pages Posted: 31 May 2020
Date Written: May 31, 2020
The fundamental objective of portfolio diversification is to construct a portfolio of uncorrelated or mildly correlated assets so as to maximize the risk-adjusted returns on a portfolio. Portfolio Optimization is one of the techniques used by investment professionals to explore the potential of different assets in maximizing the risk-adjusted returns of the portfolio by adjusting the weight of each asset using simulations or constrained scenarios. A significant amount of research has already been conducted in the area of portfolio diversification that helps investors in devising their investment strategies and policies. Cryptocurrencies in general, and Bitcoin in particular, have aroused significant interest among investment professionals, policymakers, and regulators alike. Although much research has primarily focused on the legal and technological aspects of Bitcoin, the examination of other financial, diversification, hedge, and safe-haven aspects of Bitcoin has not progressed as far. This study explores the potential of Bitcoin as an alternative asset, and its potential in portfolio diversification, by using the portfolio optimization approach. The study employs the portfolio optimization approach under multiple constraining scenarios to evaluate the effectiveness of Bitcoin in portfolio diversification. A Monte-Carlo Simulation approach is then employed to evaluate the outcomes under each scenario by randomizing the outcomes of portfolio optimization. This study suggests that Bitcoin, due to its exotic nature, unwavering appeal, and unknown set of drivers, could at best act as a diversifier rather than a hedge or a safe-haven.
Keywords: Bitcoin, Cryptocurrencies, Portfolio Optimization, Portfolio Diversification, COVID-19
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