A note on the use of spreadsheet optimisers in real estate analysis
Byrne, P. and Lee, S. (1994) A note on the use of spreadsheet optimisers in real estate analysis. Working Papers in Land Management & Development. 19/94. Working Paper. University of Reading, Reading. pp11.
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Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT) has been advocated as a more rational approach to the construction of real estate portfolios. The application of MPT can now be achieved with relative ease using the powerful facilities of modern spreadsheet, and does not necessarily need specialist software. This capability is to be found in the use of an add-in Tool now found in several spreadsheets, called an Optimiser or Solver. The value in using this kind of more sophisticated analysis feature of spreadsheets is increasingly difficult to ignore. This paper examines the use of the spreadsheet Optimiser in handling asset allocation problems. Using the Markowitz Mean-Variance approach, the paper introduces the necessary calculations, and shows, by means of an elementary example implemented in Microsoft's Excel, how the Optimiser may be used. Emphasis is placed on understanding the inputs and outputs from the portfolio optimisation process, and the danger of treating the Optimiser as a Black Box is discussed.
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