Malitskaia, Yulia. “Momentum with Volatility Timing.”(2019)

Abstract

The growing adoption of factor investing simultaneously prompted the active topic of factor timing approaches for the dynamic allocation of multi-factor portfolios. The trend represents a natural development of filling the gap between passive and active management. The paper addresses this direction by introducing the volatility-timed winners approach that applies past volatilities as a timing predictor to mitigate momentum factor underperformance for time intervals spanning the market downturn and post-crisis period. The proposed approach was confirmed with Spearman rank correlation and demonstrated in relation to different strategies including momentum volatility scaling, risk-based asset allocation, time series momentum and MSCI momentum indexes. The corresponding analysis generalized existing volatility scaling strategies and brought together the two branches of the smart-beta domain, factor investing and risk-based asset allocation.