We seek to manage risk in order to capitalize on opportunities and improve our performance. Disciplined risk estimation and management are deeply integrated components of the investment process across each one of our strategies.
We believe a well-constructed portfolio upfront will outperform in good markets and protect our client’s capital in difficult markets. For this reason, Citadel has spent over a quarter of a century establishing risk management as a core discipline. This approach begins with a dedicated governance group that oversees risk management. An emphasis on liquid markets, proprietary risk models and a diversified funding structure seeks to further strengthen our approach.
Operating independently of the investment businesses, and reporting to the CEO, the Portfolio Construction and Risk Group (PCG) guides the allocation of risk capital. It is supported by a dedicated R&D team to create custom tools and technologies.
Citadel’s Risk Management Center provides a comprehensive view of the various investment portfolios and how they fit within pre-established guidelines. Built in 2014, its front-end consists of a 27’ by 8’ interactive touchscreen designed to visualize data in ways that allow for rapid comprehension. Its back-end systems, which connect to every Citadel office worldwide, continuously run a wide range of operational readiness, risk, and stress test monitors.
In pre-trade discussions, the Portfolio Construction and Risk group works to identify the impact of potential trades on a portfolio’s risk and stress exposures. In the ex-post analysis, the group evaluates the skill, infrastructure, investment universe, risk and working capital utilization of each business, and uses this information as a part of the risk capital allocation process.
A solid framework is important, but successful risk management can only be accomplished when it becomes a central part of the portfolio manager’s analysis of potential trades and portfolio construction. Continuous communication and collaboration with the investment teams, combined with an in-depth understanding of the portfolios, play a critical role in maintaining and strengthening our risk culture.