top of page
  • Writer's pictureAlpesh Patel

Unlocking the Secrets to Smarter (Pension) Investing: 7 Eye-Opening Portfolio Pitfalls To Avoid

Updated: Nov 15, 2023

Prepare to be captivated as I unravel the troubling discoveries I made after analyzing dozens of investment portfolios sent to me via this link:

My findings emphasize the vital need for my initiative, Campaign for a Million, which aims to educate a million individuals on the art of smarter investing. Discover more at

1. Over-diversification: The curse of too many funds

A prevalent issue was over-diversification, resulting in subpar performance. Investors either "sprayed and prayed" or believed that having multiple funds equated to proper diversification. This approach led to portfolios comprising up to a thousand stocks, causing inefficiencies and preventing desired exposure to specific companies like Amazon, Microsoft, etc. they may wish.

2. Analysis paralysis: The pitfall of owning too many stocks

Similar to the first issue, some investors owned over 50 stocks, falsely assuming it ensured diversification. By presenting successful investors' portfolios and statistical data, I demonstrated the need for more diversification provided by excessive holdings. This inability to effectively monitor all stocks led to poor performance and frustration.

3. The high-stakes gamble: Too few stocks cause significant losses

A few investors fell into this trap due to time constraints or insufficient knowledge. Having too few stocks in a portfolio amplified the impact of small market movements, often resulting in substantial losses.

4. The misguided trust in investment trusts

Many investors opted for high-fee investment trusts based on advertisements, unaware of cheaper and more efficient alternatives like Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs). Upon revealing these trusts' exorbitant fees and underperformance, I introduced the world of ETFs, showcasing their superior returns and lower volatility.

5. The lopsided portfolio: Neglecting value, growth, and income diversity

While some portfolios contained stocks with all three attributes, many were overwhelmed by those needing more in one or more aspects. This imbalance resulted from investors' need for more understanding, which I aimed to rectify.

6. The overlooked factor: Low Sortino stocks

The Sortino ratio, a measure of risk versus reward, is crucial in optimizing returns for the level of risk taken. Unfortunately, many investors needed to be made aware of this metric, leading to suboptimal portfolios.

7. The unexpected hazard: Higher volatility, lower performance

Unsuspecting investors often underestimated the amount of risk they were exposed to, and I helped them realize the true volatility of their portfolios.

With my expertise and guidance, I aim to transform the investment landscape, empowering individuals to become better investors through my Campaign for a Million.

Alpesh Patel OBE


bottom of page