'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Looking at the total return, or increase in value of 1.2% in the last 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (36.4%)
- During the last 3 years, the total return, or performance is 3.7%, which is smaller, thus worse than the value of 14.9% from the benchmark.

'Compound annual growth rate (CAGR) is a business and investing specific term for the geometric progression ratio that provides a constant rate of return over the time period. CAGR is not an accounting term, but it is often used to describe some element of the business, for example revenue, units delivered, registered users, etc. CAGR dampens the effect of volatility of periodic returns that can render arithmetic means irrelevant. It is particularly useful to compare growth rates from various data sets of common domain such as revenue growth of companies in the same industry.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (6.4%) in the period of the last 5 years, the annual return (CAGR) of 0.2% of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is lower, thus worse.
- During the last 3 years, the annual performance (CAGR) is 1.2%, which is lower, thus worse than the value of 4.7% from the benchmark.

'Volatility is a rate at which the price of a security increases or decreases for a given set of returns. Volatility is measured by calculating the standard deviation of the annualized returns over a given period of time. It shows the range to which the price of a security may increase or decrease. Volatility measures the risk of a security. It is used in option pricing formula to gauge the fluctuations in the returns of the underlying assets. Volatility indicates the pricing behavior of the security and helps estimate the fluctuations that may happen in a short period of time.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Looking at the 30 days standard deviation of 22.5% in the last 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF, we see it is relatively greater, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (17.8%)
- During the last 3 years, the 30 days standard deviation is 20.9%, which is larger, thus worse than the value of 20% from the benchmark.

'Downside risk is the financial risk associated with losses. That is, it is the risk of the actual return being below the expected return, or the uncertainty about the magnitude of that difference. 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 volatility over 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is 16.8%, which is larger, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (13.2%) in the same period.
- Looking at downside volatility in of 15.6% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus worse in comparison to SPY (15.1%).

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (0.22) in the period of the last 5 years, the risk / return profile (Sharpe) of -0.1 of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is lower, thus worse.
- During the last 3 years, the risk / return profile (Sharpe) is -0.06, which is smaller, thus worse than the value of 0.11 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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- The excess return divided by the downside deviation over 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is -0.13, which is smaller, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.3) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the downside risk / excess return profile is -0.08, which is lower, thus worse than the value of 0.15 from the benchmark.

'The Ulcer Index is a technical indicator that measures downside risk, in terms of both the depth and duration of price declines. The index increases in value as the price moves farther away from a recent high and falls as the price rises to new highs. The indicator is usually calculated over a 14-day period, with the Ulcer Index showing the percentage drawdown a trader can expect from the high over that period. The greater the value of the Ulcer Index, the longer it takes for a stock to get back to the former high.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- The Downside risk index over 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is 13 , which is greater, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (4.93 ) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the Ulcer Ratio is 9.14 , which is greater, thus worse than the value of 5.58 from the benchmark.

'Maximum drawdown is defined as the peak-to-trough decline of an investment during a specific period. It is usually quoted as a percentage of the peak value. The maximum drawdown can be calculated based on absolute returns, in order to identify strategies that suffer less during market downturns, such as low-volatility strategies. However, the maximum drawdown can also be calculated based on returns relative to a benchmark index, for identifying strategies that show steady outperformance over time.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- The maximum reduction from previous high over 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is -31.5 days, which is larger, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (-33.7 days) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the maximum DrawDown is -31.5 days, which is greater, thus better than the value of -33.7 days from the benchmark.

'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:- The maximum days below previous high over 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is 546 days, which is higher, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (187 days) in the same period.
- Looking at maximum days under water in of 512 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus worse in comparison to SPY (139 days).

'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 (42 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the average days under water of 232 days of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is greater, thus worse.
- Compared with SPY (36 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the average days below previous high of 188 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 Currency Hedged MSCI Japan 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.