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45 46 MEASURING RISK resort to mathematical expressions to capture the central concepts. Understanding these concepts is critical if the investor wants to apply risk management techniques in practice. In fact, the rigor of the mathematics makes the subject easier to understand and apply, not more difficult. For readers who are less comfortable with the algebra, each important mathematical expression is followed by an explanation. COMMONLY USED MEASURES OF RISK The primary building block for discussing risk is the concept of a probability distribution of prices or returns.

Not at all. This trader should say, “Prices have risen to the extent represented by these increased earnings, unless this effect has been counterbalanced by other considerations. ” It is a sort of an automatic assumption in the human mind that the present conditions will continue, and our whole scheme of life is necessarily based to a great degree on this assumption. When the price of wheat is high, farmers increase their acreage because growing wheat pays better; when it is low, they plant less.

These results are summarized in the following: 41 The Likelihood of Loss Likelihood of Loss Expected Return: 10% Standard Deviation: 20% Loss Amount: 10% Likelihood of a single year loss: Likelihood of an average annual loss over 10 years: Likelihood of a cumulative loss over 10 years: Likelihood of a loss in one or more of the next 10 years: Likelihood of a cumulative loss at some point over the next 10 years (monitored continuously) It pays to know what you are asking. 85% PART two Measuring Risk 43 CHAPTER 5 Measuring and Managing Investment Risk Roger G.

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