Smart.  Disciplined.  Reliable.

Raffa Investment Advisers’ investment philosophy is routed in the belief that risk and return are inextricably linked.  Rather than undertaking what we believe is a futile and expensive effort to find managers that can circumvent the risk/return relationship, we focus on understanding each client’s willingness and ability to accept risk.  Next, we turn our focus to identifying the investments that will deliver the appropriate risk for each client in an efficient and precise manner.

We consider it wasteful to incur fees to time markets and we consider it risky to limit investing to concentrated positions or sectors. Rather, we focus on developing broadly diversified and efficient portfolios that are balanced to meet the specific needs of each client.  As markets ebb and flow, we act with discipline and conviction in pursuit of each client’s short and long term goals.

A central tenet of our investment approach is to provide clarity and transparency for our clients so that they can focus their time and resources elsewhere — be it in their own lives or in the communities they serve.

The research underlying our investment philosophy

The rigorous, academic research that underlies our philosophy seeks to identify the risk factors that explain the difference in long-term market performance expectations.  RIA reduces or emphasizes these factors in a precise, inexpensive and diversified manner.  The result is a portfolio balanced to meet the needs of each client.

Our approach employs elements of both active and passive investing.  We favor passively managed investment vehicles to implement a strategic asset allocation plan.

The central tenets of our philosophy are:

  • An investor’s expected return is determined at the board asset class level
  • Small cap and value-oriented asset classes have higher expected returns, commensurate with higher expected risk
  • Fixed income (bonds) should be used as a source portfolio stability and to reduce overall portfolio volatility
  • Diversification reduces non-systemic risk without reducing expected returns
  • Investment fees reduce long-term performance expectations

Our approach is based on the importance of asset allocation in reflecting the client’s willingness and ability to take risk.