# Relationship between risk and return in finance

### The Concepts of Return on Investment and Risk | Finance - Zacks

As a general rule, investments with high risk tend to have high returns and vice versa. Another way to look at it is that for a given level of return, it is human nature . Risk-return tradeoff is a specific trading principle related to the inverse relationship between investment risk and investment return. A lower risk investment has lower potential for profit. A higher risk investment has a higher potential for profit but also a potential for a greater.

The government is unlikely to default on its debtDebt Money that you have borrowed.

### Understanding risk and return | UniSuper

You must repay the loan, with interest, by a set date. At the other extreme, common shares are very risky because they have no guarantees and shareholders are paid last if the company is in trouble or goes bankrupt. Investors must be paid a premium, in the form of a higher average return, to compensate them for the higher risk of owning shares. The additional return for holding shares rather than safe government debt is known as the equityEquity Two meanings: The part of investment you have paid for in cash.

Investments in the stock market. This Interactive investing chart shows that the average annual return on treasury bills since was 4. However, past returns are not always an indication of future performance. Risk needs to be considered at all investing stages and for different goals. Take action Use this chart to see the risk-reward tradeTrade The process where one person or party buys an investment from another.

Taking the above mentioned stock A and B, coefficient of correlation can be calculated with the following formula: If Y is 1, then perfect positive correlation exists between securities and returns move in the same direction.

### The Relationship between Risk and Return - National Financial Inclusion Taskforce

Thus, the correlation between two securities depends upon the covariance between the two securities and the standard deviation of each security. Change in Portfolio Proportion: If the amount of proportion of funds, invested in different stocks is changed e. Using the same example, the portfolio standard deviation is calculated for different proportions as follows: Thus, by changing the investment proportions in different securities, the portfolio risk can be brought down to zero.

If advantages of diversification are to be availed of coefficient of correlation has to be taken into consideration. This can be explained graphically also. The graph proves that: Thus, if one is on the curve MN rather than on the straight line MN, one can increase the return without increasing the risk.

Stocks A and B displays the following parameters: There is high degree of risk in combining the two securities. Market and Non-Market Risk and Return: The non-market component of excess return is uncorrelated with the market component.

The variance of the sum will thus equal the sum of the variance of the parts: The risk of a security measured by variance can thus, be divided into two parts. One that is not related to market risk and one that is. Sharpe developed the capital asset pricing model CAPM.

He emphasized that the risk factor in portfolio theory is a combination of two risks i. The systematic risk attached to each of the security is the same irrespective of any number of securities in the portfolio. The total risk of portfolio is reduced with increase in the number of stocks, as a result of decrease in the unsystematic risk distributed over number of stocks in the portfolio.

A risk adverse investor prefers to invest in risk free securities. A small investor having few securities in his portfolio has greater risk.

To reduce the unsystematic risk, he must build up a well-diversified portfolio of securities. This is shown in the following figure: The systematic risk of two portfolios remains the same. To the rational investors, it makes no difference that the stocks in one portfolio are individually riskier than other stocks because successive stock price changes are identically distributed, independent of random variables. An individual is assumed to rank alternatives in his order of preference.

However, due to operating constraints e. As such an individual chooses among the logically possible in the highest on his ranking. In other words an individual acts in a way in which he can maximize the return on his investment under conditions of risk and uncertainty.

The CAPM is represented mathematically by the following equation: The CAPM relates a required rate of return to each level of systematic risk. The following figure portrays it graphically. Point K represents the market portfolio and point R the risk less rate of return.

- Relationship Between Risk and Return Financial Management
- 4 Main Sections of Risk and Return Relationship
- Understanding risk and return

Line RKZ represents the preferred investment strategies, showing alternative combinations of risk and return obtainable by combining the market portfolio with borrowing or lending. The CAPM suggests a required rate of return that is made up of two separate components: The market price of risk is multiplied by nth assets systematic risk coefficient.

The product of this multiplication determines the appropriate risk premium i. This risk premium induces investors to take risk. The Capital Market Line CML defines the relationship between total risk and expected return for portfolios consisting of the risk free asset and the market portfolio.

If all the investors hold the same risky portfolio, then in equilibrium it must be the market portfolio. CML generates a line on which efficient portfolios can lie. Those which are not efficient will however lie below the line. It is worth mentioning here that CAPM risk return relationship is separate and distinct from risk return relationship of individual securities as represented by CML. In contrast the risk less end R statistics of all portfolios, even the inefficient ones should plot on the CAPM.

The CML will never include all points, if efficient portfolios, inefficient portfolios and individual securities are placed together on one graph.

## The risk-return relationship

The individual assets and the inefficient portfolios should plot as points below the CML because their total risk includes diversifiable risk. Security Market Line describes the expected return of all assets and portfolios of assets in the economy.

The risk of any stock can be divided into systematic risk and Unsystematic risk. Beta b is the index of systematic risks. In case of portfolios involving complete diversification, where the unsystematic risk tends to zero, there is only systematic risk measured by Beta. Thus, the dimensions of the security which concern us are expected return and Beta.

The expected return on any asset or portfolio, whether it is efficient or not can be determined by SML by focusing on Beta of securities. The higher the Beta for any security the higher must be its equilibrium return. Further the relationship between Beta and expected return is linear.

It can be drawn as follows: The SML is an upward sloping straight line with an intercept at the risk free return securities and passes through the market portfolio.

The upward slope of the line indicates that greater expected returns accompany higher levels of Beta. In equilibrium each security or portfolio lies on the SML. The above figure shows that the return expected from portfolio or investment is a combination of risk free return plus risk premium.

An investor will come forward to take risk only if the return on investment also includes risk premium. Thus the expected return on a portfolio E Rm consists of the following: In other words, the investor gets rewarded for bearing systematic risk. It is not total variance of returns that affects expected returns but only that part of variance in return that cannot be diversified away. If investors can eliminate all non-systematic risk through diversification there is no reason they should not be rewarded in terms of higher return for bearing it.

Though the CAPM has been regarded as a useful tool for both analysts of financial securities and financial managers, it is not without critics. The CAPM has serious limitations in the real world, discussed as follows: Expectations cannot be observed but we do have access to actual returns.

Hence empirical tests and data for practical use tend to be based almost exclusively on historical returns. They may not be reflective of true risk involved. Due to the unstable nature of beta it may not reflect the future volatility of returns although it is based on the post history.

Historical evidence of the tests of Beta showed that they are unstable and they are not good estimates of future risk. However, total risk has been found to be more relevant and both types of risk appear to be positively related to returns.

The factors influencing bonds in respect of risk and return are different and the risk of bonds is rated and known to investors. Thus, it can said that the applicability of CAPM is broken by the less practical nature of this model as well as complexity and difficulty of dealing with beta values.

Risk Free Rate of Lending or Borrowing: The three factors discussed in CAPM are systematic risk Bthe expected market return and the risk free rate.

## The Concepts of Return on Investment and Risk

The risk free rate is the least discussed of the three factors. It is used only twice in CAPM. It is first used as a minimum rate of return R and it is used to find out the risk premium rm — R. Thus, any error in estimating the risk free rate of return would lead to a wrong estimate of the expected rate of return for an asset or portfolio.

In CAPM theory, the risk free asset is one of the two choices available to the investor. The investor can reduce the risk of the portfolio by increasing the amount of risk free asset in the portfolio or he can increase the risk by reducing the risk free asset position or by borrowing at the risk free rate to further invest. In fact, the risk free rate is the rate that will entice investors to choose between current or future consumption between savings or investment.

The price required to induce an investor to forgo current consumption for a certain future sum, to forgo liquidity, is the price of time or the risk free rate of return.

The separation Theorem propounded by James Tobin States that the investors make portfolio choices solely on the basis of risk and return, separating that decision from all other characteristics of the securities.

If particular assets are chosen on the basis of other factors, the CAPM is incomplete because it ignores other relevant factors. Thus, it is implied that each investor will spread his funds among risky securities in the same relative proportion, adding risk free borrowing or lending in order to achieve a personally preferred overall combination of risk and return.

Even if the investor commits zero proportion in these securities, the prices of these would eventually fall, thereby causing the expected returns of these securities to rise until the resulting tangency portfolio has a non-zero proportion associated with it. Ultimately, everything will be balanced out. When all the price adjusting stops the market will be brought into equilibrium. Financial market downturns affect asset prices, even if the fundamentals remain sound.

Inflation leads to a loss of buying power for your investments and higher expenses and lower profits for companies. Business fundamentals could suffer from increased competitive pressures, higher interest expenses, quality problems and management inability to execute on strategic and operational plans.

Weak fundamentals could lead to declining profits, losses and eventually a default on debt obligations. Return You cannot eliminate risk, but you can manage it by holding a diversified portfolio of stocks, bonds and other assets.

The portfolio composition should be consistent with your financial objectives and tolerance for risk. Investment returns tend to be higher for riskier assets. For example, savings accounts, certificates of deposit and Treasury bonds have lower rates of return because they are safe investments, while long-term returns are higher for growth stocks and other riskier assets.