He studied at the University of Chicago (Ph.D., 1954), where he had the opportunity to meet some of the greatest economic thinkers (among whom Leonard J. Savage). Then, he moved to the RAND Corporation in Santa Monica, California where he meet William Sharpe.
He is best known for his pioneering work in modern portfolio theory, studying the effects of asset risk, correlation and diversification on expected investment portfolio returns. Markowitz won the Bank of Sweden Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel in [990 while a professor of finance at Baruch College of the City University of New York.
A Markowitz Efficient Portfolio is one where no added diversification can lower the portfolio's risk for a given return expectation (alternately, no additional expected return can be gained without increasing the risk of the portfolio). The Markowitz Efficient Frontier is the set of all portfolios that will give the highest expected return for each given level of risk. These concepts were essential to the development of the Capital Asset Pricing Model.
Markowitz also co-edited the textbook The Theory and Practice of Investment Management with Frank J. Fabozzi of the Yale School of Management.
- Fabozzi, F. J. and Markowitz H. M. (2002), "The Theory and Practice of Investment Management", John Wiley & Sons
- Markowitz, H. M. (1952), "Portfolio Selection", Journal of Finance, Vol. 7, Iss. 1, p. 77-91.
- Markowitz, H. M. (1970), "Portfolio Selection: Efficient Diversification of Investments", 368p, Yale University Press,