'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Looking at the total return of 47.6% 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 (66.2%)
- During the last 3 years, the total return is 26.1%, which is lower, thus worse than the value of 45.7% 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 annual return (CAGR) of 8.1% 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 (10.7%)
- Looking at annual return (CAGR) in of 8.1% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to SPY (13.4%).

'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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Looking at the historical 30 days volatility of 20.6% in the last 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF, we see it is relatively higher, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (13.3%)
- During the last 3 years, the volatility is 18.5%, which is greater, thus worse than the value of 12.5% from the benchmark.

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

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Looking at the downside risk of 22.6% 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 (14.6%)
- During the last 3 years, the downside volatility is 20.4%, which is greater, thus worse than the value of 14.1% 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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) over 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is 0.27, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.62) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (0.87) in the period of the last 3 years, the risk / return profile (Sharpe) of 0.3 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.'

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 0.25, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.56) in the same period.
- Looking at downside risk / excess return profile in of 0.27 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to SPY (0.77).

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- The Downside risk index over 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is 12 , which is higher, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (3.96 ) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the Ulcer Index is 7.43 , which is higher, thus better than the value of 4.01 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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (-19.3 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum DrawDown of -29.6 days of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is lower, thus worse.
- Looking at maximum DrawDown in of -21.6 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to SPY (-19.3 days).

'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'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (187 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum days below previous high of 546 days of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF is larger, thus worse.
- During the last 3 years, the maximum time in days below previous high water mark is 293 days, which is higher, thus worse than the value of 131 days from the benchmark.

'The Average 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. 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:- Looking at the average days below previous high of 168 days in the last 5 years of iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (39 days)
- During the last 3 years, the average days below previous high is 82 days, which is larger, thus worse than the value of 34 days from the benchmark.

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 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.