Why Defensive Strategies Work in the Long-Term

Risk averse investors should adopt a defensive strategy for the long-term, advises V. Anantha Nageswaran, CIO of Bank Julius Baer Singapore, who shares his investment tips on CNBC Asia Pacific's "Protect Your Wealth".

He suggests leaning toward fixed income and commodities, while capping equities to around 20 percent for one's portfolio. Those with a higher threshold for risk, he says, could put an extra 10 percent in equities to trade in rallies.

Nageswaran believes there are opportunities in high grade, investment grade fixed income instruments, for they are selling at very good yields in the developed world. He also favors similar products from developing countries.

"A lot of emerging market bonds have had the prices come down very badly because of a lack of liquidity, and companies are doing very well," he explains. "And if you’re interested you can even use some mild leverage to enhance the returns on the fixed income side, because interest rates and borrowing costs are low."

As to holding cash, Nageswaran believes diversification is key. He says the U.S. dollar and the euro should make up no more than 30-40 percent of one's cash because they are the world's most liquid currencies.

"Beyond that, one should look at the Canadian dollar, the Norwegian kroner, the Swedish kronor, and the Singapore dollar," he says. "Whenever there is a weakness in the Singapore dollar, I personally would submit that we should accumulate Singapore dollars and these currencies as a way to diversify one’s cash positions."

But Nageswaran takes a different tack with commodity currencies, as he explains: "I’m not very positive on the commodity currencies to the extent that I’m not positive on the growth rebound in the West. So I would use the current strength and (sell) currencies like the Australian and New Zealand dollars rather than to add more."

Gold, the traditional safe-haven asset, should be treated as an insurance against financial assets going down, according to Negaswaran.

"If you look at it as an insurance then one would get less anxious about gold prices being so volatile. It is just an insurance contract against financial meltdown, and we still need to have that insurance contract for at least two more years, if not three more years."

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Catch "Protect Your Wealth" on CNBC's Asia Pacific network every Tuesday on "CNBC's Cash Flow," Wednesday on "Asia Squawk Box" and Thursday on "Capital Connection."