Portfolio Construction Matters
The role of portfolio construction in the implementation of equity market neutral factors is often underestimated. Taking the classical momentum strategy as an example, we show that one can significantly improve the main strategy’s features by properly taking care of this key step. More precisely, an optimised portfolio construction algorithm allows one to significantly improve the Sharpe Ratio, reduce sector exposures and volatility fluctuations, and mitigate the strategy’s skewness and tail correlation with the market. These results are supported by long-term, world-wide simulations and will be shown to be universal. Our findings are quite general and hold true for a number of other 'equity factors'. Finally, we discuss the details of a more realistic set-up where we also deal with transaction costs.