DEFINITION of 'Holdings'

The contents of an investment portfolio held by an individual or entity such as a mutual fund or pension fund. Portfolio holdings may encompass a wide range of investment products, from stocks, bonds and mutual funds to options, futures and exchange-traded funds, and relatively esoteric instruments such as private equity and hedge funds.

The number of holdings contribute to the degree of its diversification within the portfolio. A mix of stocks across different sectors, bonds of different maturities, and other investments would suggest a well-diversified portfolio, while concentrated holdings in a handful of stocks within a single sector indicates a portfolio with very limited diversification.


The proportion of holdings within a portfolio has a significant impact on its overall return, with the performance of the largest holdings having a bigger influence on portfolio return than small or marginal holdings.

Investors routinely scour the list of holdings of top money managers in order to "piggy back" on their trades. These investors usually seek to replicate the trading activity of the best money managers, by buying stocks where the manager has initiated a long position or added significantly to an existing position, and selling positions where the manager has exited a stake. This strategy may not always be successful for the average investor, given the considerable lag between the period when the money manager or fund effected the trades and the time when the fund's holdings are disseminated to the general public.

  1. Top Holdings

    The highest volume of publicly traded assets held by an individual, ...
  2. Portfolio

    A grouping of financial assets such as stocks, bonds and cash ...
  3. Diversification

    A risk management technique that mixes a wide variety of investments ...
  4. Portfolio Manager

    The person or persons responsible for investing a mutual, exchange-traded ...
  5. Turnover Ratio

    The percentage of a mutual fund or other investment vehicle's ...
  6. Equity Risk Premium

    The excess return that investing in the stock market provides ...
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  1. A company I recently looked up showed institutional holdings of more than 100%. How ...

    It is obviously not technically possible for any shareholder or category of shareholder to hold more than 100% of a company's ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. What is the ideal number of stocks to have in a portfolio?

    First off, there is no single correct answer to this question - it will depend on a number of factors such as your country ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Can mutual funds only hold stocks?

    There are some types of mutual funds, called stock funds or equity funds, which hold only stocks. However, there are a number ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. How do mutual funds compound interest?

    The magic of compound interest can be summed up as the concept of interest making interest. On the other hand, simple interest ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. Do mutual funds pay interest?

    Some mutual funds pay interest, though it depends on the types of assets held in the funds' portfolios. Specifically, bond ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Why have mutual funds become so popular?

    Mutual funds have become an incredibly popular option for a wide variety of investors. This is primarily due to the automatic ... Read Full Answer >>

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