Alternative is a broad term, taking in whatever is different from the conventional. In investments, that means anything that isn’t stocks, bonds or cash. It’s a large playing field that is attracting an increasing number of investors, including some of the wealthiest in the world. Returns can be high, but so can risks; what are some of these diverse investment opportunities and of what should the shrewd investor be cautious?
Corporate governance is moving from back to front stage. Change starts at the top, and a good board of directors is credited with strengthening value creation and stability. What makes a good board? Members should represent their company’s diverse stakeholders and be skilled in a variety of areas that were historically considered the domain of management. For too long, too many boards have fallen short and a reboot is required!
It makes good economic sense that when people work toward their own economic benefit, the economy, and society, as a whole benefits—but do these profitable conditions benefit all members of society, or are some left out? Today, fintech challengers are accomplishing what traditional banks have failed to fully achieve—providing fair and open access to basic financial services for all of the world’s citizens.
The threat of catastrophic consequences from rampant global warming has given rise to a relatively new financial instrument, the green bond, issued by governments and institutions that are successfully combining healthy financial returns with equally healthy measures to tackle environmentally unhealthy carbon emissions. These investments are now regarded as an integral part of the global effort to combat climate change.
For 31 years, private-equity firm Blackstone Group has produced healthy returns for its fund investors, despite weathering some stormy economic conditions. Much of its success is due to its strategy of reaching money-making, risk-mitigating deals at the most advantageous times.