Active investing has hugely dominated the Indian market for the past decade, where the primary skill of a fund manager is to identify well-performing stocks. However, quant mutual funds have been experiencing increased adoption in the country for the past few years.
What are they? Are they actually a good investment? Read on to find out.
About Quant Funds
Quant based funds are a part active, part passive investment, where the fund manager is actively involved in the investment decisions. However, their actions are determined by particular rules and restrictions that guide the final decision.
These rules and restrictions are similar to an algorithm or Artificial Intelligence (AI). They are extremely objective, leaving no room for judgements. The fund manager invests in financial securities depending upon the numerical data accumulated through quantitative analysis and research.
Since quant mutual funds are managed in a passive manner, such schemes have a lower expense ratio compared to regular actively managed funds.
As mentioned earlier, quant-based mutual funds follow certain rules and regulations. Such funds utilise various machine learning tools and advanced financial models, AI, big data, and much more. These tools help in forecasting future share prices and investing accordingly.
But, who sets the rules?
The fund managers set the rules after a keen observation on significant technical and fundamental analysis. After setting these rules, fund managers do not have much involvement, as they keep on updating on their own.
However, fund managers have to monitor the funds and make minor changes if necessary. Essentially, these models utilise variables and past data, including trading volume, value, yield, beta, volatility, momentum, liquidity, correlation, alpha, and other multi-pattern models to determine a pattern that can predict future prices.
The quantitative investment process consists of three stages, namely —
In this stage, all essential inputs are given. These may include rules, market and company data. During this stage, stocks that feature undesirable features, such as extreme volatility, inefficient allocation of capital or other factors, are removed from the model.
In this stage, all estimations regarding price, returns, risk parameters and other factors are determined. The stock’s evaluation is also done during the forecasting stage.
The construction of the portfolio happens during this stage. The quant model customises an optimum portfolio. Based on this model, fund managers assign weightage for each stock to get the needed result and reduce risks.
Quant mutual funds feature a host of benefits, including these:
Along with its benefits, there are a handful of disadvantages that quant funds have. Find them below:
Whether or not quant mutual funds are a good investment depends on investors. Preferences may vary from individual to individual. The fact is that every fund is a worthy investment if it matches investors’ financial goals. However, before moving forward, one must conduct proper market research and then delve into conclusions.