creativeworkspace_grey_1280x720 creativeworkspace_grey_1280x720 creativeworkspace_grey_1280x720

Putting a portfolio together

Saxo Be Invested

Make sure you know the score before you invest

The sheer volume of financial market assets on offer today can make the task of assembling a portfolio overwhelming.

Diversification has always been the maxim of prudent investing – put all your eggs in one basket and you could end up losing them all. But spreading your capital across several asset classes, and across a variety of individual instruments within those sub-groups, is a tried and trusted investment strategy.

Know yourself

Making that initial choice to diversify is the easy bit but selecting the asset categories and more specifically the weight (or percentage of the total basket) allotted to each one is a little trickier. One initial step involves a rigorously honest self-assessment that addresses three key issues:

(A) Your financial robustness – what percentage of your capital can you afford to lose (however temporarily) if things turn bad? 

(B) How much do you value your own sense of security? Are you willing to accept a lower rate of return for the relative safety and reliability of government bonds, or are you quite happy to sacrifice that security blanket for the possibility of far greater returns from a more volatile asset class, say, emerging market corporate bonds? 

(C) Finally, you should also consider your investment horizon, assess which instruments you’ll be keeping long term and which you will need to adjust as market conditions change.

Research thoroughly

Most investors are subconsciously drawn towards the familiar and for many this means shares in the companies and brands they read about every day in the financial press. But it’s always worthwhile to dig in and try to understand unfamiliar instruments, be they in a far-away market or of a type you’ve never previously considered. Research, research and research again. 

Check out company earnings reports and outlooks and scout around for analysts’ assessments of the company itself and the broader sector within which it operates. 

Keep on top of the financial news, as well as the broader political news for insights into government policy changes that may impact your investments. For example, a government push for more green energy should be good news for companies in the renewables space (but watch out for those with outdated or unsuitable technologies). Thorough preparation will make task of assembling your portfolio far easier, and also that little bit more bulletproof.

Expect the unexpected

Sudden, unpredictable and often violent events are an intrinsic part both of the human condition and the investment process. The classic example here is the Kobe earthquake of January 1995, which cost thousands of lives and caused $200 billion of damage to buildings and infrastructure. Japan’s Nikkei 225 index plunged 7.6%, eventually leading to the demise of Britain’s famed Barings Bank.

If anything underlines the value of diversification across geographies and asset classes and hedging your risk through variety, this story does. Anybody overexposed to Japanese assets back in early 1995 was not in a good place the day after the earthquake. Those with finely tuned, diversified and properly hedged portfolios, fared far better.

Explore our investment solutions

Investing, simplified

Investing is simple with our wide range of Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), which cover emerging markets, green energy, biotechnology and more.

Explore ETFs


Expert portfolios, no assembly required 

With SaxoSelect, your portfolio is built and managed for you by the professionals, from BlackRock, Brown and Morningstar to our own carefully chosen expert traders.

Discover SaxoSelect


The Saxo Bank Group entities each provide execution-only service and access to Analysis permitting a person to view and/or use content available on or via the website. This content is not intended to and does not change or expand on the execution-only service. Such access and use are at all times subject to (i) The Terms of Use; (ii) Full Disclaimer; (iii) The Risk Warning; (iv) the Rules of Engagement and (v) Notices applying to Saxo News & Research and/or its content in addition (where relevant) to the terms governing the use of hyperlinks on the website of a member of the Saxo Bank Group by which access to Saxo News & Research is gained. Such content is therefore provided as no more than information. In particular no advice is intended to be provided or to be relied on as provided nor endorsed by any Saxo Bank Group entity; nor is it to be construed as solicitation or an incentive provided to subscribe for or sell or purchase any financial instrument. All trading or investments you make must be pursuant to your own unprompted and informed self-directed decision. As such no Saxo Bank Group entity will have or be liable for any losses that you may sustain as a result of any investment decision made in reliance on information which is available on Saxo News & Research or as a result of the use of the Saxo News & Research. Orders given and trades effected are deemed intended to be given or effected for the account of the customer with the Saxo Bank Group entity operating in the jurisdiction in which the customer resides and/or with whom the customer opened and maintains his/her trading account. Saxo News & Research does not contain (and should not be construed as containing) financial, investment, tax or trading advice or advice of any sort offered, recommended or endorsed by Saxo Bank Group and should not be construed as a record of our trading prices, or as an offer, incentive or solicitation for the subscription, sale or purchase in any financial instrument. To the extent that any content is construed as investment research, you must note and accept that the content was not intended to and has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such, would be considered as a marketing communication under relevant laws.

Please read our disclaimers:
Notification on Non-Independent Investment Research (
Full disclaimer (
Full disclaimer (

Saxo Bank A/S (Headquarters)
Philip Heymans Alle 15

Contact Saxo

Select region


Trade responsibly
All trading carries risk. Read more. To help you understand the risks involved we have put together a series of Key Information Documents (KIDs) highlighting the risks and rewards related to each product. Read more

This website can be accessed worldwide however the information on the website is related to Saxo Bank A/S and is not specific to any entity of Saxo Bank Group. All clients will directly engage with Saxo Bank A/S and all client agreements will be entered into with Saxo Bank A/S and thus governed by Danish Law.

Apple and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc, registered in the US and other countries and regions. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc. Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google LLC.