It is a truism of many conservative institutional investors’ that no good can ever come of trying to time markets. Trying to make investment decisions based on where markets are likely to go almost always, so the argument goes, leads to folly — far better to establish a prudent asset allocation and stick with it.

Now a white paper put out by $620 million, New York-based alternative-investment firm Spring Mountain Capital asserts that prudent market timing can be an effective way to preserve and even grow capital.

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