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ETF Specialist

Few Good Alternatives

Liquid alternatives can diversify risk, but most do little to improve traditional portfolios.

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A version of this report appeared in the May issue of Morningstar ETFInvestor. 

Is it necessary to diversify beyond traditional stocks and bonds? The idea of owning an investment with positive expected returns uncorrelated with the rest of the portfolio is clearly appealing. But many alternative strategies fail to deliver the diversification and performance benefits they promise. Alternative investments aren’t necessary for long-term success or to have a well-diversified portfolio. So, it’s okay to skip them. That said, there are some strategies that might be worth considering—but proceed with caution.

Alex Bryan has a position in the following securities mentioned above: USMV. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.