Risk Pyramid

Risk Pyramid

Someone sent me a newsletter that essentially is an advertisement to buy some diversified funds. Attached in the newsletter is this picture which I found it very interesting. This is, of course, not the first time nor the last time I’ll ever see this picture. I’ll like to take some time to think about the myths portrayed in the diagram.

The diagram shows the investment risk pyramid, where the highest and presumably highest returns are placed right at the tip of the pyramid. At the base, and therefore forms the foundation of the whole pyramid structure, lie the no risk and presumably lower returns (in fact, negative returns). You can see that cash is defined as a no risk instrument.

I think everyone should define what they mean by risk. In the academia world, risk is volatility – or how much the price of the instrument varies from its mean price. In that aspect, then the investment risk pyramid would make perfect sense. Read more…