'Total return, when measuring performance, is the actual rate of return of an investment or a pool of investments over a given evaluation period. Total return includes interest, capital gains, dividends and distributions realized over a given period of time. Total return accounts for two categories of return: income including interest paid by fixed-income investments, distributions or dividends and capital appreciation, representing the change in the market price of an asset.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Looking at the total return, or performance of 13.1% in the last 5 years of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (67.9%)
- During the last 3 years, the total return, or increase in value is 5.9%, which is smaller, thus worse than the value of 46.6% from the benchmark.

'The compound annual growth rate isn't a true return rate, but rather a representational figure. It is essentially a number that describes the rate at which an investment would have grown if it had grown the same rate every year and the profits were reinvested at the end of each year. In reality, this sort of performance is unlikely. However, CAGR can be used to smooth returns so that they may be more easily understood when compared to alternative investments.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The annual performance (CAGR) over 5 years of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF is 2.5%, which is smaller, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (10.9%) in the same period.
- Looking at compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) in of 1.9% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to SPY (13.6%).

'Volatility is a statistical measure of the dispersion of returns for a given security or market index. Volatility can either be measured by using the standard deviation or variance between returns from that same security or market index. Commonly, the higher the volatility, the riskier the security. In the securities markets, volatility is often associated with big swings in either direction. For example, when the stock market rises and falls more than one percent over a sustained period of time, it is called a 'volatile' market.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (13.3%) in the period of the last 5 years, the historical 30 days volatility of 3% of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF is lower, thus better.
- Looking at volatility in of 2.8% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to SPY (12.5%).

'The downside volatility is similar to the volatility, or standard deviation, but only takes losing/negative periods into account.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The downside volatility over 5 years of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF is 3.2%, which is lower, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (14.6%) in the same period.
- Looking at downside deviation in of 3% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to SPY (14.2%).

'The Sharpe ratio (also known as the Sharpe index, the Sharpe measure, and the reward-to-variability ratio) is a way to examine the performance of an investment by adjusting for its risk. The ratio measures the excess return (or risk premium) per unit of deviation in an investment asset or a trading strategy, typically referred to as risk, named after William F. Sharpe.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- The Sharpe Ratio over 5 years of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF is 0, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.64) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (0.89) in the period of the last 3 years, the ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) of -0.2 is smaller, thus worse.

'The Sortino ratio, a variation of the Sharpe ratio only factors in the downside, or negative volatility, rather than the total volatility used in calculating the Sharpe ratio. The theory behind the Sortino variation is that upside volatility is a plus for the investment, and it, therefore, should not be included in the risk calculation. Therefore, the Sortino ratio takes upside volatility out of the equation and uses only the downside standard deviation in its calculation instead of the total standard deviation that is used in calculating the Sharpe ratio.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Looking at the downside risk / excess return profile of 0 in the last 5 years of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (0.58)
- Compared with SPY (0.78) in the period of the last 3 years, the downside risk / excess return profile of -0.19 is lower, thus worse.

'The ulcer index is a stock market risk measure or technical analysis indicator devised by Peter Martin in 1987, and published by him and Byron McCann in their 1989 book The Investors Guide to Fidelity Funds. It's designed as a measure of volatility, but only volatility in the downward direction, i.e. the amount of drawdown or retracement occurring over a period. Other volatility measures like standard deviation treat up and down movement equally, but a trader doesn't mind upward movement, it's the downside that causes stress and stomach ulcers that the index's name suggests.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- The Ulcer Ratio over 5 years of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF is 1.63 , which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (3.96 ) in the same period.
- Looking at Ulcer Index in of 1.9 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to SPY (4.01 ).

'A maximum drawdown is the maximum loss from a peak to a trough of a portfolio, before a new peak is attained. Maximum Drawdown is an indicator of downside risk over a specified time period. It can be used both as a stand-alone measure or as an input into other metrics such as 'Return over Maximum Drawdown' and the Calmar Ratio. Maximum Drawdown is expressed in percentage terms.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- The maximum DrawDown over 5 years of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF is -4.5 days, which is larger, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (-19.3 days) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (-19.3 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum reduction from previous high of -4.5 days is larger, thus better.

'The Drawdown Duration is the length of any peak to peak period, or the time between new equity highs. The Max Drawdown Duration is the worst (the maximum/longest) amount of time an investment has seen between peaks (equity highs). Many assume Max DD Duration is the length of time between new highs during which the Max DD (magnitude) occurred. But that isn’t always the case. The Max DD duration is the longest time between peaks, period. So it could be the time when the program also had its biggest peak to valley loss (and usually is, because the program needs a long time to recover from the largest loss), but it doesn’t have to be'

Which means for our asset as example:- Looking at the maximum time in days below previous high water mark of 331 days in the last 5 years of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (187 days)
- Compared with SPY (139 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum days under water of 331 days is higher, thus worse.

'The Drawdown Duration is the length of any peak to peak period, or the time between new equity highs. The Avg Drawdown Duration is the average amount of time an investment has seen between peaks (equity highs), or in other terms the average of time under water of all drawdowns. So in contrast to the Maximum duration it does not measure only one drawdown event but calculates the average of all.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- The average days below previous high over 5 years of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF is 113 days, which is higher, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (41 days) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (36 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the average days under water of 137 days is higher, thus worse.

Historical returns have been extended using synthetic data.
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- "Year" returns in the table above are not equal to the sum of monthly returns due to compounding.
- Performance results of iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF are hypothetical, do not account for slippage, fees or taxes, and are based on backtesting, which has many inherent limitations, some of which are described in our Terms of Use.