BlackRock Portfolio Construction Academy
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Welcome to BlackRock’s Portfolio Construction Academy for the Morgan Stanley Portfolio Management Institute, a multi-tier learning curriculum designed around the concepts of building better portfolios to solve client challenges. BlackRock is proud to partner with Morgan Stanley to roll out the Portfolio Risk Platform, and strives to support Morgan Stanley advisors in getting the most out of these capabilities to ensure your clients achieve their objectives, and continue to trust you with more of their assets.  


That’s why we’ve partnered with PMI to deliver a series of 5 30-minute virtual workshops designed to bring you those same perspectives from our risk management experts, and challenge the way we all think about the process for constructing investment portfolios.  By completing all 5 training sessions, we anticipate that you will walk away with more conviction in how you build and articulate the concepts of portfolio construction to your clients through a process we’ve trademarked as BBIM™ – Benchmark, Budget, Invest, Monitor.  This is how we think about portfolio construction at BlackRock, and we look forward to having you attend one of our upcoming workshops.


For those unable to attend at the appointed time, the sessions will be recorded

and available on the PMI website.


Ahead of the training sessions, we ask that you complete the following pre-work:

Online Mandatory Video (accessible via the PortRisk site)

Attendance at introductory training (i.e. weekly webex sessions – accessible via the PortRisk site - or in-person where available)



• Session 1: Returns are unpredictable, but risk can be managed.  (January 9, 4:30 pm ET)

Powered by a powerful multi-asset factor based risk engine, the Portfolio Risk Platform offers advisors a more precise way to understand and manage portfolio risk. The Portfolio Risk Platform enables advisors to develop a more comprehensive understanding of the risks they are taking in portfolios by employing both returns-based and holdings-based analysis. This session will educate advisors on the underlying risk engine, provide greater clarity into risk factors and ultimately set a solid foundation for advisors to become conversant in the Portfolio Risk Platform language of risk and well prepared to use a risk based approach to portfolio construction.

• Session 2: Providing context for security selectors.  (January 23, 4:30 pm ET)

This session will shift from theory to practical application around how advisors can use Portfolio Risk Platform to ‘budget risk’ and begin to implement risk-based portfolio construction and management decisions. Using a single stock portfolio, we highlight the ways you can effectively manage and make trade-offs around risk contribution, active risk and exposure to relevant investment factors, as risk budgeting plays a critical role in portfolio construction.

• Session: 3: Using Portfolio Risk Platform to drive towards a range of  investment outcomes in multi-asset portfolios. (February 6, 4:30 pm ET)

Clients are becoming less focused on advisors’ ability to ‘beat the market’ and much more focused on understanding how their advisor can help unlock their intended financial outcomes. This session will focus on using the Portfolio Risk Platform for multi asset portfolios including stocks, bonds, mutual funds and ETFs to deliver specific client outcomes. Examples may include increasing portfolio efficiency, income, capital preservation and include techniques around  budgeting, fees, taxes and opportunity cost while focusing on how to efficiently manage their tradeoffs.

• Session 4: Bringing Diversification Into your portfolios: Exploration of fixed income, alternative funds and other asset classes in Portfolio Risk Platform. (February 20, 4:30 pm ET)

In today’s markets, diversification has been hard to find and even harder to ‘prove’ its worth to client. However, over the long-term, the benefits of diversification are well documented and play a critical role it delivering the outcomes your clients expect. After all, a portfolio of your best ideas is not always your best portfolio. In this session we will explore how you can use Portfolio Risk Platform to better understand, evaluate and calibrate the diversification in your portfolios using diversifying asset classes like bonds and alternatives to ensure these exposure are delivering the portfolio what you intended.

• Session 5: How do you do that? (March 6, 4:30 pm ET)

While risk modeling may appear straight forward, it isn’t. Using a holdings based approach, confidence in the risk model is essential in making tools like Portfolio Risk Platform feel useful. This session will focus on the ‘how’ of the modeling of more complex financial instruments in Portfolio Risk Platform. This would include mutual funds, ETFs, but also look at the treatment of alternatives/hedge funds, options and annuities.


We will be sending out links to register for these sessions in the coming weeks. 

In the meantime, please hold the time on your calendar.