I continually get letters asking about whether to put money in what are called alternative investments as part of a diversification strategy, in other words, a strategy using assets that are not correlated with other parts of a portfolio, specifically stocks and bonds. Alternative investments are part and parcel of what is called modern portfolio theory. The category includes hedge and private equity funds. Up front, let me say that I am not in favor of such investments, particularly for the average investor. And I am not alone.