Investment tales from private bankers

October 7, 2009

By Neil Chatterjee

Top private bankers are no different from the rest of us when it comes to looking after their money.

Some, such as Citigroup’s head of investments in Asia and ex-Lehman banker Debashish Dutta Gupta sold everything when his former employer went bust. Others held on and took the paper losses, before increasing their fixed income exposure and slowly edging back into equities this year.

Chris Meares, the head of HSBC’s private bank, is content with his conservative portfolio. To add some juice to his fixed income portfolio, he bought some Chinese A-shares, which were perhaps overvalued but he’s sure he’ll be happy in ten years.

His main regret? If only he had followed what he told clients — to buy a basket of ten banks at the start of the year “If I had, I wouldn’t be sitting here, I’d be very rich now. I gave the advice but I didn’t do it,” he told the Summit in Singapore.

What’s your biggest investment regret?

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…not having the cash to buy platinum shares back in 1981 when I studied Investment Theory.

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