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All About Asset Allocation Paperback – September 15, 2005

37 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Everything you need to know about asset allocation--What it is, how to make it work for you, and more

Praise for All About Asset Allocation:

"All About Asset Allocation offers advice that is both prudent and practical--keep it simple, diversify, and above all, keep your expenses low--from an author who both knows how vital asset allocation is to investment success and, most important, works with real people."
--John C. Bogle, Founder and former CEO, The Vanguard Group

"With All About Asset Allocation at your side, you'll be executing a sound investment plan, using the best materials, and wearing the best safety rope that money can buy."
--William Bernstein, Founder,, Author, The Intelligent Asset Allocator

"Rick Ferri has done it again.  All About Asset Allocation has the potential to become the classic bible on building investment portfolios the right way."
--Bill Schultheis, Author, The Coffeehouse Investor

"Of the many books on asset allocation, All About Asset Allocation is one of the few excellent ones. Ferri offers practical ways by which to implement and benefit from the strategy."
--Scott Simon, Attorney, Author, The Prudent Investor Act -- A Guide to Understanding

Whatever your level of investing expertise, from beginner to veteran, All About Asset Allocation will give you the information you need to know on:

  • How asset allocation works
  • Asset class selection
  • Multi-class asset investing
  • Life cycle investing
  • Rebalancing a portfolio
  • And more

About the Author

Richard A. Ferri, CFA, is president and senior portfolio manager of Portfolio Solutions, LLC, and an adjunct professor of finance at Walsh College in Michigan. He is the author of Protecting Your Wealth in Good Times and Bad, All About Index Funds, and Serious Money: Straight Talk About Investing for Retirement.


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Product Details

  • Series: All about
  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill; 1 edition (September 15, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071429581
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071429580
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #722,506 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

92 of 98 people found the following review helpful By Artephius (. VINE VOICE on April 15, 2006
Format: Paperback
I was pretty impressed with this book. I give it an A+.

I have been a student of investing and financial planning since 1979. In 1978, when Venita VanCaspel's book The New Money Dynamics was published, the term "asset allocation" was not even listed in the index of financial terms. She doesn't really mention asset allocation between asset classes and any benefits of asset allocation.

Gary Brinson's 1986 famous study can be defined as the birth of asset allocation. He found that over 90% of a portfolio's return can be determined by the asset classes used, not what the individual investments were. Brinson's findings have been relatively slow to flow through the investment community and to individual investors. Dial the time clock ahead from 1986 to 2006, and one of Business Week's cover stories seeks to explain why the S&P 500's profits have increased dramatically over the last 5 years, yet the S&P 500 companies have had very little stock price appreciation. One explanation offered is that more and more investors practice asset allocation and choose other investments besides the S&P 500 for their portfolios. The increased demand for other asset classes like foreign stocks, commodities, and gold has subsequently less to a decrease in demand for large cap stocks in the S&P 500.

Ferri's book does an excellent job of explaining the concept of asset allocation and he uses real life portfolios to illustrate the advantages of asset allocation.

Ferri points out the ideal investments to add to one's portfolio would be negatively correlated to the investments in the existing portfolio. He also points out that the correlations between asset classes changes over time.
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43 of 45 people found the following review helpful By Paul Manka on March 23, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My fee-only financial planner recommended that I read this book in preparation for my annual review of investments. He offered to buy back the book if I was dissatisfied. I found the book valuable and therefore did not take him up on his offer.

I appreciated Ferri's clear explanation of the concepts of asset allocation accompanied by plenty of data tables and graphs. I also found his technique of limiting each chapter to three or four topics and stating them both and the beginning and end of the chapter very helpful in reviewing what I had learned.

Although the topic is complex, Ferri kept his text at the layperson level. It definitely gave me a better understanding of the Modern Portfolio theory principles my financial planner was following in determing my personal asset allocation.

Although I have the services of a planner, the book provides enough information for the do-it-yourself type to set up their own plan based on the principles of the book. A particularly nice touch is a list of funds that meet specific asset allocation goals at the end of each chapter explaining that asset class.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Mel Lindauer on December 17, 2005
Format: Paperback
This latest book from Richard Ferri, CFA, has all the elements needed to help an investor develop and implement an asset allocation strategy. The book covers the nuts and bolts and provides lots of supporting graphics. In addition, the author provides recommended portfolios for those in various stages of the investment cycle, as well as for investors with varying degrees of risk tolerance (aggressive, moderate or conservative). This book has something for both novices and more sophisticated investors alike. It's a winner!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By oven bird on February 11, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Author Ferri cuts through the fog of academic analysis and conventional wisdom and provides common sense advice that investors can use. Of particular value is his discussion of changing correlations among asset classes. If correlations were static, it would be child's play to build a portfolio that sat squarely on the efficient frontier and satisfied any individual's risk tolerance and return requirements. But as he illustrates, correlations between asset classes change over time, sometimes quickly and unpredictably. Since the shifts are unknowable in advance, it is impossible to stay consistently balanced on the knife edge of the efficient frontier. His advice- own a little of everything in some generally accepted proportions and don't sweat the details. That's great counsel, sure to serve most investors well and allow them to sleep at night and enjoy life, rather than worrying about the status of their asset class correlations. I have read Bernstein's "Intelligent Asset Allocator" and Swensen's "Unconventional Success" and this is by far the best of the three.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By lapis VINE VOICE on September 16, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'd gotten past the whole "How much should I save? Reduce your debt, pay yourself first" personal finance books and really wanted to understand asset allocation beyond 80% stocks and 20% bonds. I lucked out finding this book, it was exactly what I wanted and more. It's unfortunate asset allocation books get short shrift in bookstores and even in general searches on Amazon for "personal finance." It's such a critical component of long-term investing, and it's the piece that most personal finance and/or retirement books gloss over.

Asset allocation is not just about stocks and bonds, but it's about asset classes, styles, foreign vs U.S. -- and this book includes some incredibly revealing information about how adding certain "riskier" investments actually REDUCES portfolio risk and increases returns. I've read a couple of the books this author recommended after his, but this was the perfect one to start with. I can't recommend it highly enough.
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