Every investor who desires to build and grow wealth should have an investment portfolio. Wealth creation efforts are less likely to succeed if they are approached haphazardly, so building an investment portfolio is a great way to add the necessary strategy and intention to these efforts.
An investment portfolio, simply defined, is a collection of all the assets an investor owns. It can be likened to a roof under which you house all your investments. A good investment portfolio will be diversified and contain a wide variety of assets such as Stocks, Bonds, Mutual Funds, Real Estate, Fine Art, Gold etc.
Types of Investment Portfolios
There are five major types of investment portfolios and they are built by taking the financial goals and risk appetite of the investor into consideration.
The Aggressive Portfolio – This type of portfolio is specially designed for investors with a high tolerance for risk. Investments that fall under this category are high risk but also have the potential to yield high returns. High beta stocks are an example of this kind of asset. They are more volatile and experience a greater fluctuation in price when compared to the overall market.
The Defensive Portfolio – This category is for people who have a low-risk appetite. Building a defensive portfolio usually involves investing in stocks of companies that will stay in business no matter what. These are companies that make products that are important for everyday survival.
The Income Portfolio – The goal of an income portfolio is to generate positive cash flow. This includes stocks that pay regular dividends and provide a steady source of income for the investor. An income portfolio can serve as a great supplement to an investor’s salary or retirement income.
The Speculative Portfolio – This portfolio is also tailored to an investor with a high-risk tolerance. It basically involves pre-empting which stocks are likely to do well. An example of a speculative investment is an initial public offering (IPO) of a new tech company. Financial advisors usually advise investors against putting more than 10% of their investment funds into such assets.
The Hybrid Portfolio – The hybrid portfolio, as the name implies, is a combination of different assets. This portfolio encourages diversification and provides the investor with a diversified portfolio which can include stocks, mutual funds, bonds, commodities, real estate, and even art. This portfolio category comes with the advantage of flexibility for the investor; it also reduces the negative impact of losses from one asset class.
How to start building an investment portfolio
Building an investment portfolio can seem like an uphill task, but it does not have to be. The first step is to identify your financial goals. As Bloomberg financial analyst and Chief Investment Officer of Ritholtz Wealth Management LLC, Barry Ritholtz aptly points out: “When it comes to investing, there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all portfolio.”
Identifying your unique goals will determine if your money should go into short-term or long-term investments. It will also predict what kind of portfolio would be best suited to your needs. A portfolio tailored towards retirement will be different from one that is intended to provide income within the next five years.
It is also important to assess your risk tolerance. If you are risk-averse, this means you are careful about putting your money at risk for promising rewards. Therefore, your money should be invested as safely and predictably as possible. However, if you have a high tolerance for risk, you are open to taking risks for the possibility of making greater returns.
Once this is completed, you would need to honestly examine your investing skills, to establish whether you can build a portfolio yourself or would require the support of a Financial Adviser.
The next step is to decide on asset allocation. How much of your money will go into each investment? How do you plan to balance your portfolio and continue to diversify as time goes on? These are all questions that must be answered and it’s advisable to seek the help of a professional for this stage of the process.
In conclusion, the major keys to keep in mind when building an investment portfolio are to identify your goals, assess your risk appetite and talk to an expert. Ready support is available to you, as FBNQuest offers a variety of investment products and is available to offer advice to investors based on their risk appetite.