A Closer Look at “Alternative Investments”

By Michael Williford, Spring 2016 Student Intern

Along with my colleagues, I’ve written about alternative investments in the past. In a five part series that begins next week, I’m going to highlight some of the more common alternative investments, discussing their structure and focusing on the risks FINRA and the Securities and Exchange Commission have highlighted for retail investors.

It’s important to realize that brokers and the financial industry at large no longer limit their pitches of alternative investments to the well-heeled. Increasingly, we are seeing retail level investment outlets encourage average investors to consider alternative investments, with almost no mention of the specific kind of risks these investments entail, and a simple disclaimer such as, “alternative asset classes are not appropriate for everyone. Check your risk tolerance and objectives before investing in new opportunities.” So, starting next week, we’ll be taking a closer look at Alternative Investments. Be sure to check in on Monday when we discuss hedge funds.