AAII Members Talk Alternative Investments


June’s Asset Allocation Survey special question asked AAII members if any portion of their portfolio is allocated to alternative investments (something we do not track in our monthly survey). Almost half of all respondents (49%) said no, they do not hold any alternative investments. Some said they have no interest in owning them, while others suggested they needed to learn more about these types of investments before deciding to allocate to them. A small group of members asked us to define what counts as an alternative investment.

Slightly more than a third (35%) said they own alternative investments. Many described their allocations to “alts” as accounting for 10% or less of their total portfolio. Real estate was most common, with 15% of all respondents saying they had exposure to it either through real estate investment trusts (REITs) or via a direct ownership. One member has ownership in a vineyard.

Here is a sampling of the responses:

  • “I do not and will not consider ‘alternative investments.’”
  • “No, because I do not have enough information about ‘alternative investments’ for evaluation.”
  • “Not much…I tried silver, gold, stamps, and convertible bonds; no returns are as good as stocks.”
  • “Yes, about 8% to 10% of my portfolio is in ‘alternative investments.’”

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