Years of lower equity risk premiums have prompted advisors to begin looking beyond the traditional modern portfolio theory for strategies that can produce heftier returns.Enter the core/satellite design - defined as a commitment to longer-term investing in "core" vehicles, combined with satellites of frequently changed assets that can add to returns.

However, problems with definition, asset selection and implementation can often become blurry. And there remains an ongoing discussion about which assets belong in the core and which belong in the satellites. The concept as introduced several years ago was a market-neutral core with satellites that added market risk.

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