'Total return is the amount of value an investor earns from a security over a specific period, typically one year, when all distributions are reinvested. Total return is expressed as a percentage of the amount invested. For example, a total return of 20% means the security increased by 20% of its original value due to a price increase, distribution of dividends (if a stock), coupons (if a bond) or capital gains (if a fund). Total return is a strong measure of an investment’s overall performance.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The total return over 5 years of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund is 7.4%, which is smaller, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (81.9%) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the total return is 4.8%, which is lower, thus worse than the value of 46.1% 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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Looking at the compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 1.4% in the last 5 years of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (12.7%)
- Looking at compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) in of 1.6% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to SPY (13.5%).

'In finance, volatility (symbol σ) is the degree of variation of a trading price series over time as measured by the standard deviation of logarithmic returns. Historic volatility measures a time series of past market prices. Implied volatility looks forward in time, being derived from the market price of a market-traded derivative (in particular, an option). Commonly, the higher the volatility, the riskier the security.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Looking at the historical 30 days volatility of 22.4% in the last 5 years of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund, we see it is relatively greater, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (19.8%)
- During the last 3 years, the historical 30 days volatility is 24.8%, which is greater, thus worse than the value of 23% from the benchmark.

'Risk measures typically quantify the downside risk, whereas the standard deviation (an example of a deviation risk measure) measures both the upside and downside risk. Specifically, downside risk in our definition is the semi-deviation, that is the standard deviation of all negative returns.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- The downside risk over 5 years of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund is 16.5%, which is higher, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (14.5%) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the downside volatility is 18.4%, which is higher, thus worse than the value of 16.8% from the benchmark.

'The Sharpe ratio was developed by Nobel laureate William F. Sharpe, and is used to help investors understand the return of an investment compared to its risk. The ratio is the average return earned in excess of the risk-free rate per unit of volatility or total risk. Subtracting the risk-free rate from the mean return allows an investor to better isolate the profits associated with risk-taking activities. One intuition of this calculation is that a portfolio engaging in 'zero risk' investments, such as the purchase of U.S. Treasury bills (for which the expected return is the risk-free rate), has a Sharpe ratio of exactly zero. Generally, the greater the value of the Sharpe ratio, the more attractive the risk-adjusted return.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Looking at the risk / return profile (Sharpe) of -0.05 in the last 5 years of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (0.52)
- During the last 3 years, the risk / return profile (Sharpe) is -0.04, which is smaller, thus worse than the value of 0.48 from the benchmark.

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The downside risk / excess return profile over 5 years of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund is -0.06, which is smaller, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.7) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (0.65) in the period of the last 3 years, the excess return divided by the downside deviation of -0.05 is lower, thus worse.

'Ulcer Index is a method for measuring investment risk that addresses the real concerns of investors, unlike the widely used standard deviation of return. UI is a measure of the depth and duration of drawdowns in prices from earlier highs. Using Ulcer Index instead of standard deviation can lead to very different conclusions about investment risk and risk-adjusted return, especially when evaluating strategies that seek to avoid major declines in portfolio value (market timing, dynamic asset allocation, hedge funds, etc.). The Ulcer Index was originally developed in 1987. Since then, it has been widely recognized and adopted by the investment community. According to Nelson Freeburg, editor of Formula Research, Ulcer Index is “perhaps the most fully realized statistical portrait of risk there is.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Looking at the Ulcer Index of 15 in the last 5 years of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (6.08 )
- Compared with SPY (6.77 ) in the period of the last 3 years, the Ulcer Index of 12 is higher, thus worse.

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- The maximum DrawDown over 5 years of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund is -38.2 days, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (-33.7 days) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (-33.7 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum reduction from previous high of -33.9 days is lower, thus worse.

'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) in days.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (139 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum days below previous high of 712 days of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund is larger, thus worse.
- Compared with SPY (119 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum time in days below previous high water mark of 314 days is greater, 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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- The average days below previous high over 5 years of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund is 256 days, which is greater, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (35 days) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (27 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the average days below previous high of 103 days is higher, thus worse.

Historical returns have been extended using synthetic data.
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- Note that yearly returns do not equal the sum of monthly returns due to compounding.
- Performance results of iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund 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.