'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:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (121.2%) in the period of the last 5 years, the total return of 59.5% of iShares MSCI EAFE ETF is smaller, thus worse.
- Compared with SPY (67.5%) in the period of the last 3 years, the total return of 22.6% is lower, thus worse.

'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 annual performance (CAGR) of 9.8% in the last 5 years of iShares MSCI EAFE ETF, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (17.2%)
- Compared with SPY (18.7%) in the period of the last 3 years, the compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7% is smaller, thus worse.

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Looking at the 30 days standard deviation of 18% in the last 5 years of iShares MSCI EAFE ETF, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (18.7%)
- During the last 3 years, the volatility is 20.6%, which is lower, thus better than the value of 22.5% 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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Looking at the downside risk of 13.6% in the last 5 years of iShares MSCI EAFE ETF, we see it is relatively greater, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (13.6%)
- Looking at downside volatility in of 15.6% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to SPY (16.3%).

'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 ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) over 5 years of iShares MSCI EAFE ETF is 0.41, which is smaller, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.79) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (0.72) in the period of the last 3 years, the ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) of 0.22 is smaller, thus worse.

'The Sortino ratio improves upon the Sharpe ratio by isolating downside volatility from total volatility by dividing excess return by the downside deviation. The Sortino ratio is a variation of the Sharpe ratio that differentiates harmful volatility from total overall volatility by using the asset's standard deviation of negative asset returns, called downside deviation. The Sortino ratio takes the asset's return and subtracts the risk-free rate, and then divides that amount by the asset's downside deviation. The ratio was named after Frank A. Sortino.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Looking at the downside risk / excess return profile of 0.54 in the last 5 years of iShares MSCI EAFE ETF, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (1.08)
- Looking at downside risk / excess return profile in of 0.29 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to SPY (1).

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The Downside risk index over 5 years of iShares MSCI EAFE ETF is 8.74 , which is higher, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (5.59 ) in the same period.
- Looking at Ulcer Ratio in of 9.05 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus worse in comparison to SPY (6.83 ).

'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:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (-33.7 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum drop from peak to valley of -34.2 days of iShares MSCI EAFE ETF is lower, thus worse.
- During the last 3 years, the maximum DrawDown is -33.9 days, which is lower, thus worse than the value of -33.7 days from the benchmark.

'The Maximum Drawdown Duration is an extension of the Maximum Drawdown. However, this metric does not explain the drawdown in dollars or percentages, rather in days, weeks, or months. It is the length of time the account was in the Max Drawdown. A Max Drawdown measures a retrenchment from when an equity curve reaches a new high. It’s the maximum an account lost during that retrenchment. This method is applied because a valley can’t be measured until a new high occurs. Once the new high is reached, the percentage change from the old high to the bottom of the largest trough is recorded.'

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 under water of 706 days of iShares MSCI EAFE ETF is higher, thus worse.
- During the last 3 years, the maximum days under water is 371 days, which is greater, thus worse than the value of 139 days from the benchmark.

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (33 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the average days below previous high of 224 days of iShares MSCI EAFE ETF is greater, thus worse.
- Compared with SPY (35 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the average time in days below previous high water mark of 129 days is greater, 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 EAFE 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.