Evaluation of a Portfolio in Dow Jones Industrial Average Optimized by Mean-Variance Analysis

University essay from KTH/Matematisk statistik; KTH/Matematisk statistik

Abstract: This thesis evaluates the mean-variance analysis framework by comparing the performance of an optimized portfolio consisting of stocks from the Dow Jones Industrial Average to the performance of the Dow Jones Industrial Average index itself. The results show that the optimized portfolio performs better than the corresponding index when evaluated on the period between 2015 and 2019. However, the variance of the returns are high and therefore it is difficult to determine if mean-variance analysis performs better than its corresponding index in the general case. Furthermore, it is shown that individual stocks can still influence the movement of an optimized portfolio significantly, even though the model is supposed to diversify firm-specific risk. Thus, the authors recommend modifying the model by restricting the amount that is allowed to be invested in a single stock, if one wishes to apply mean-variance analysis in reality. To be able to draw further conclusions, more practical research within the subject needs to be done.

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