First Advisor

Daniel Rogers

Date of Award

Spring 5-26-2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Business: Finance and University Honors






Diversification, international diversification, asset class, retail investor, portfolio diversification




Diversification is frequently reiterated, but for the standard retail investor, the what, how, and why often slide between the cracks. Diversifying internationally appears even more seldom discussed. A wealth of research has been integrated throughout this paper to focus on the what, how, and why of foreign diversification, all from a retail investor's perspective. This synthesis provides a comprehensive background followed by a discussion of a variety of asset classes available for diversification and biases and factors that lead to these gaps in diversification. The findings were divided into two categories: possible asset classes favorable to international diversification and causes of international diversification. Numerous asset classes available for international diversification have been identified through synthesis research, including bonds, equities, real estate, gold, cryptocurrencies, and currency, as well as several techniques of international exposure through US products. Numerous explanations for the lack of (international) diversification have also been discovered, including biases such as home bias, familiarity bias, relative optimism, and sociodemographic characteristics such as gender, age, income/wealth, and financial knowledge.


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