Investment Management Fundamentals

This course introduces the main approaches to asset management. It looks at the difference between active and passive funds, generating alpha and the importance of diversification for risk management. It introduces Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), highlighting the differences between a physical and a synthetic ETF. The course also covers the evolution and role of hedge funds in today’s market, looking in depth at their fee structure, strategies and risk profile. Finally, participants will examine the use of futures as part of an asset management strategy including how to totally and partially hedge a portfolio.


For individuals with a working knowledge of financial markets.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course participants should understand:

  • Both active and passive fund management
  • How exchange-traded funds work and the use of futures in fund management
  • The hedge fund strategies, risk and reward

Course Content

Active VS Passive Funds

  • Investment objectives and key investors
  • Profiling the investment manager
  • Beta and alpha
  • Diversification and asset allocation
  • Portfolio analysis

Exercises: Active versus passive management

Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs)

  • Key equity & fixed income ETFs
  • Physical vs. synthetic ETF
  • Benefits of the ETF structure
  • Dividend treatment and tracking error
  • Smart beta and alternative beta

Exercises: Calculating price-weighted, market-capitalisation-weight and equal-weighted index

Hedge Funds

  • Brief history of hedge funds
  • Hedge fund strategies
  • Hedge fund fees and risks
  • Fund of funds (hedge funds)
  • Side-pockets and High Water Mark (HWM)

Futures in Asset Management

  • Total hedge
  • Stock betas and beta shift
  • Risks in using futures in asset management

Exercises: Beta management with futures


of our clients would recommend Alpha to a colleague or peer


of a cohort was promoted within 2 years after participating in an Alpha course.


of participants felt more confident in their role, following an Alpha commercial leadership course.

Why study with Alpha?

Innovation and creativity born from experience

We are thought leaders in instructional and learning journey design and holistic solution architects. We have extensive finance and investments experience combined with skills application to deliver performance improving results. We develop immersive learning environments that maximize time to productivity, support talent retention and added value to improving quality of hires.

Knowledge Exchange Evangelists

We are focused on mining the embedded organisational intellectual capital for the benefit of the next generation. We create and curate best in class practice gathered from our experience with the leading financial institutions. We design our programmes with the end in mind – what results are you trying to achieve with this intervention? What metrics will we set ourselves to achieve that?

Generation Proof

Quality and innovation, using current market and industry best practices, have made us a trusted partner in delivering dynamic and motivating training for the financial and capital markets. Our programmes are generation proof and responsive to evolving learner needs and styles. Our solutions use a multi-stakeholder engagement strategy that expands beyond relationships between the learner and learning provider. We create connections with managers, peers and the wider business to drive impactful return on investment..

Enquire now

"*" indicates required fields

This form collects your contact information so that we can correspond with you.
Check out our privacy policy for more information about how we protect and manage your data.
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
The team are so friendly and pleasant to work with, everyone is very professional and keen to help us. Building a relationship over the past couple of years helps us to feel like the Alpha team are even more able to understand our needs and provide more proactive solutions.
Find out more about our in-house training courses