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Understanding Asset Allocation: An Intuitive Approach to Maximizing Your Portfolio

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?It all comes down to how well you want to perform. Without question, I know that your investment returns will only improve with Victor Canto leading you along.?

?From the Foreword by Larry Kudlow

 

?Victor Canto nails it. Any investment strategy that doesn?t keep in mind the big picture will only serve up average results in the long run. Any investor who can?t tell one signal from another will be lost. Canto thoroughly understands this, and he?s packed his book with more ...

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Overview

“It all comes down to how well you want to perform. Without question, I know that your investment returns will only improve with Victor Canto leading you along.”

–From the Foreword by Larry Kudlow

 

“Victor Canto nails it. Any investment strategy that doesn’t keep in mind the big picture will only serve up average results in the long run. Any investor who can’t tell one signal from another will be lost. Canto thoroughly understands this, and he’s packed his book with more wisdom, insight, and direction per page than most any I’ve seen. This is essential reading for all those who want to maximize investment returns.”

–Herb Gullquist, Chief Investment Officer (Ret.), Lazard Asset Management

 

“Victor’s cyclical asset allocation approach is based on a set of sound fundamental economic theory principles that provide the investor with the tools and approach necessary to outperform by focusing only on those factors that are important (inflation, growth, and taxes), and avoiding what is otherwise just a bunch of noise.”

–David Walsh, Chief Market Strategist, Allstate Insurance Company

 

“This book clearly explains why investment opportunities change over time in response to key economic factors. The author's work is an essential building block forthoughtful investors.”

–John E. Silvia, Managing Director, Chief Economist, Wachovia

 

“Very rarely does an investment guru allow us a peak under the hood. But, in Understanding Asset Allocation, Victor Canto does just that. Every page of this book will help make you a better investor. Strap on your reading glasses, get ready to learn, and start thinking about a better retirement.”

–Brian Wesbury, Chief Economist, First Trust Advisors, L.P.

 

You can achieve consistently higher returns from your investments. This book shows you the way effective asset allocation can accomplish that goal.

 

It’s not enough to rely on some investment manager’s one-size-fits-all software to allocate your precious capital: you need to understand the process and take control. In Understanding Asset Allocation, economist, investment expert, and hedge-fund manager Dr. Victor Canto shows you exactly how to do that.

 

Canto introduces a flexible, easy-to-use approach to asset allocation that leverages powerful business cycle information and investment vehicles most investors ignore. You’ll discover the right times to choose passive versus active investments, value versus growth stocks, and large caps versus small caps.

 

He reveals what you can (and can’t) learn from historical data, how to find and focus on sectors that offer exceptional opportunity, and how to more effectively manage risk. Whether you manage your own investments or rely on an advisor, this book will help you optimize all your asset allocation decisions–and maximize the returns they deliver.  

 

  • Asset allocation demystified–finally!
    Beyond the “black box”: plain-English, common-sense asset allocation techniques that work
  • Bringing unprecedented flexibility to asset allocation
    Considering every appropriate investment–traditional and nontraditional
  • Sailing with the wind at your back
    Leveraging the power of the business cycle–what to overweight, and when
  • Mastering the key economic variables that will drive your results
    Allocating to reflect the future of interest rates, government action, and more
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780131876767
  • Publisher: FT Press
  • Publication date: 3/24/2006
  • Series: Financial Times (Prentice Hall) Ser.
  • Edition description: 1ST
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 6.24 (w) x 9.28 (h) x 1.13 (d)

Meet the Author

Victor Canto, Ph.D., is founder of La Jolla Economics, an economics research and consulting firm based in La Jolla, California. He formerly served as chief investment officer of Calport Asset Management and president of A.B. Laffer, V. A. Canto & Associates.

Dr. Canto taught finance and business economics at the University of Southern California (USC) from 1977 to 1985 and has served as visiting professor at both the Universidad Central del Este, Dominican Republic, and the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA).

He has authored, edited, or co-edited several books, including the landmark Foundations of Supply-Side Economics (Academic Press, 1983), as well as Monetary Policy, Taxation, and International Investment Strategy (Quorum Books, 1990); Supply-Side Portfolio Strategies (Quorum Books, 1988); and Currency Substitution: Theory and Evidence from Latin America (Springer, 1987). His work has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, and many leading economic journals, including Economic Inquiry, Journal of Macroeconomics, and the Journal of International Money and Finance.

 

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Read an Excerpt

Understanding Asset AllocationUnderstanding Asset AllocationAn Intuitive Approach to Maximizing Your PortfolioPREFACE

Thinking about the origins of this book takes me back to my days as a graduate student. I was fortunate to attend the University of Chicago (U of C) during the 1970s, a very special time in the school's history. Back then, there was a future Nobel Prize winner running almost every workshop. Both the teachers and students had an incredible energy level, despite the very high pressure to perform. Graduate students worked hard to be well prepared, and the debates and discussions were phenomenal—regardless of which workshops one attended. The sheer number of high-quality seminars and the luminaries who ran them allowed one to accumulate an incredible breadth of economic knowledge. I was a regular participant in the money and banking, international trade, and public finance workshops run by Milton Friedman, Harry Johnson, and Arnold Harberger, respectively—teachers among the brightest in the economics profession. I also fondly remember Gary Becker's lectures on price theory.

Many faculty members at the U of C, in addition to being outstanding economists, were gifted teachers. But, instruction skills were not restricted to the elder statesmen in the department. There were also some incredible junior faculty members—among them: Robert Barro, Jacob Frenkel, Arthur Laffer, and Jeremy Siegel. In addition to their delivery skills and their content mastery, my professors all shared an interest in policy issues—in particular, the fiscal and regulatory legislation both federal and local elected officials pass. In theirlectures, they repeatedly illustrated the way top-down incentives and disincentives affect both economic behavior and the economy's performance. In particular, they taught their students the way to trace government policies' impact through the economy.

I carried much away from my experience at the U of C, but the two sector models' power Harry Johnson drilled into his students highlights my understanding. Gary Becker taught incentives' role in human behavior. It was in Harberger's class, however, I was able to put it all together. He beautifully combined his famous interpretation of the corporate income tax incidence and his general-equilibrium approach's discipline with his analysis of tax rate distortions and waste measurement, applying all to real-world situations. In my opinion, this is where Harberger really excelled. With his incredible depth and range of knowledge, he was able to propose simple and elegant solutions to the problems public policy often relegates to an economy.

I have tried to follow Harberger's example in my professional life. During my years at the University of Southern California (USC), I paid close attention to policy issues and applied many concepts and ideas I learned from "Alito," the name Harberger received from his admiring Latin-American students. In time, my interest in the interconnection of policy and economic behavior evolved. After leaving USC in the mid-1980s, I worked for AB Laffer, VA Canto & Associates, where I focused more and more on government policies' impact and implications. But, it was not until 1997—at which point, I had started my own firm with encouragement from my wife, Ana, and three daughters, Vianca, Victoria, and Veronica—I decided to focus on what I really had become interested in: I had found that seldom does government action analysis apply to the strategies vital to business managers, financial analysts, and investors. With this in mind, I set forth to discover the policy actions' investment implication. My discoveries would certainly be useful to not only investors, portfolio managers, and financial analysts, but also corporate strategists, government officials, and the policymakers themselves. This book represents the sum of this knowledge gained in my professional career. For the reader, I hope it represents a new path for investing—the extra step demanding it be taken.

Along the way, while developing my investing theories, I have met many wonderful people (many of whom have become great friends). Sometimes, during difficult times, people find out who their true friends really are. In 1997, as I began my new firm, Harlan Cadinha, Herb Gullquist, Kevin Melich, Robert Doede, Christian Carrillo, and Danielle Andrews were wonderfully supportive and proved to be exceptional

friends. More recently, I have gotten to know David Cleary, Robert Holz, Tom Gangle, Peter Carl, and Peter Mork, and in one way or another, I have benefited from their friendships. Charlie Parker, Robert Webb, and Larry Kudlow have always been supportive and encouraging.

One person without whom this project would not have become reality is Chris McEvoy. His dedication, initiative, and many editorial suggestions greatly enhanced the manuscript. Andy Wiese and Samir Ghia were outstanding research assistants.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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Table of Contents

CONTENTS

Foreword

Preface

About the Author

Introduction: You Can Do Better

  • 1: In Search of the Upside 
  • 2: The Case for Cyclical Asset Allocation 
  • 3: Thinking in Cycles 
  • 4: Tax Tips 
  • 5: Linking Up 
  • 6: To Start, a Benchmark 
  • 7: Taking It to the Tilt 
  • 8: The Cyclical Asset Allocation Strategy's Versatility 
  • 9:Active versus Passive Management 
  • 10: Location, Location, Location? 
  • 11: Eye on Elasticity 
  • 12: Keeping the Wheels on the Hedge-Fund ATV 
  • 13: Market Timing or Value Timing? 
  • 14: Every Strategy Has Its Day 
  • 15: Putting It All Together: Value Timing 

Endnotes 

Bibliography 

Glossary 

Index 

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Read More Show Less

Preface

PREFACE

Thinking about the origins of this book takes me back to my days as a graduate student. I was fortunate to attend the University of Chicago (U of C) during the 1970s, a very special time in the school's history. Back then, there was a future Nobel Prize winner running almost every workshop. Both the teachers and students had an incredible energy level, despite the very high pressure to perform. Graduate students worked hard to be well prepared, and the debates and discussions were phenomenal—regardless of which workshops one attended. The sheer number of high-quality seminars and the luminaries who ran them allowed one to accumulate an incredible breadth of economic knowledge. I was a regular participant in the money and banking, international trade, and public finance workshops run by Milton Friedman, Harry Johnson, and Arnold Harberger, respectively—teachers among the brightest in the economics profession. I also fondly remember Gary Becker's lectures on price theory.

Many faculty members at the U of C, in addition to being outstanding economists, were gifted teachers. But, instruction skills were not restricted to the elder statesmen in the department. There were also some incredible junior faculty members—among them: Robert Barro, Jacob Frenkel, Arthur Laffer, and Jeremy Siegel. In addition to their delivery skills and their content mastery, my professors all shared an interest in policy issues—in particular, the fiscal and regulatory legislation both federal and local elected officials pass. In their lectures, they repeatedly illustrated the way top-down incentives and disincentives affect both economic behavior and theeconomy's performance. In particular, they taught their students the way to trace government policies' impact through the economy.

I carried much away from my experience at the U of C, but the two sector models' power Harry Johnson drilled into his students highlights my understanding. Gary Becker taught incentives' role in human behavior. It was in Harberger's class, however, I was able to put it all together. He beautifully combined his famous interpretation of the corporate income tax incidence and his general-equilibrium approach's discipline with his analysis of tax rate distortions and waste measurement, applying all to real-world situations. In my opinion, this is where Harberger really excelled. With his incredible depth and range of knowledge, he was able to propose simple and elegant solutions to the problems public policy often relegates to an economy.

I have tried to follow Harberger's example in my professional life. During my years at the University of Southern California (USC), I paid close attention to policy issues and applied many concepts and ideas I learned from "Alito," the name Harberger received from his admiring Latin-American students. In time, my interest in the interconnection of policy and economic behavior evolved. After leaving USC in the mid-1980s, I worked for AB Laffer, VA Canto & Associates, where I focused more and more on government policies' impact and implications. But, it was not until 1997—at which point, I had started my own firm with encouragement from my wife, Ana, and three daughters, Vianca, Victoria, and Veronica—I decided to focus on what I really had become interested in: I had found that seldom does government action analysis apply to the strategies vital to business managers, financial analysts, and investors. With this in mind, I set forth to discover the policy actions' investment implication. My discoveries would certainly be useful to not only investors, portfolio managers, and financial analysts, but also corporate strategists, government officials, and the policymakers themselves. This book represents the sum of this knowledge gained in my professional career. For the reader, I hope it represents a new path for investing—the extra step demanding it be taken.

Along the way, while developing my investing theories, I have met many wonderful people (many of whom have become great friends). Sometimes, during difficult times, people find out who their true friends really are. In 1997, as I began my new firm, Harlan Cadinha, Herb Gullquist, Kevin Melich, Robert Doede, Christian Carrillo, and Danielle Andrews were wonderfully supportive and proved to be exceptional friends. More recently, I have gotten to know David Cleary, Robert Holz, Tom Gangle, Peter Carl, and Peter Mork, and in one way or another, I have benefited from their friendships. Charlie Parker, Robert Webb, and Larry Kudlow have always been supportive and encouraging.

One person without whom this project would not have become reality is Chris McEvoy. His dedication, initiative, and many editorial suggestions greatly enhanced the manuscript. Andy Wiese and Samir Ghia were outstanding research assistants.


Read More Show Less

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