'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 of 4.7% in the last 5 years of Vanguard Short Term Treasury Fund, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (58.9%)
- Looking at total return, or increase in value in of -1.4% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to SPY (33.9%).

'The compound annual growth rate (CAGR) is a useful measure of growth over multiple time periods. It can be thought of as the growth rate that gets you from the initial investment value to the ending investment value if you assume that the investment has been compounding over the time period.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (9.7%) in the period of the last 5 years, the compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 0.9% of Vanguard Short Term Treasury Fund is lower, thus worse.
- Looking at annual return (CAGR) in of -0.5% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to SPY (10.2%).

'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 volatility of 1.8% in the last 5 years of Vanguard Short Term Treasury Fund, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (21.6%)
- Looking at historical 30 days volatility in of 2% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to SPY (25%).

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Looking at the downside volatility of 1.2% in the last 5 years of Vanguard Short Term Treasury Fund, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (15.7%)
- Looking at downside risk in of 1.4% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to SPY (18.1%).

'The Sharpe ratio is the measure of risk-adjusted return of a financial portfolio. Sharpe ratio is a measure of excess portfolio return over the risk-free rate relative to its standard deviation. Normally, the 90-day Treasury bill rate is taken as the proxy for risk-free rate. A portfolio with a higher Sharpe ratio is considered superior relative to its peers. The measure was named after William F Sharpe, a Nobel laureate and professor of finance, emeritus at Stanford University.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Looking at the Sharpe Ratio of -0.85 in the last 5 years of Vanguard Short Term Treasury Fund, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (0.33)
- Looking at risk / return profile (Sharpe) in of -1.48 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to SPY (0.31).

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The ratio of annual return and downside deviation over 5 years of Vanguard Short Term Treasury Fund is -1.28, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.46) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the ratio of annual return and downside deviation is -2.11, which is smaller, thus worse than the value of 0.43 from the benchmark.

'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:- Looking at the Ulcer Ratio of 2.14 in the last 5 years of Vanguard Short Term Treasury Fund, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (8.91 )
- Looking at Downside risk index in of 2.75 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to SPY (11 ).

'Maximum drawdown measures the loss in any losing period during a fund’s investment record. It is defined as the percent retrenchment from a fund’s peak value to the fund’s valley value. The drawdown is in effect from the time the fund’s retrenchment begins until a new fund high is reached. The maximum drawdown encompasses both the period from the fund’s peak to the fund’s valley (length), and the time from the fund’s valley to a new fund high (recovery). It measures the largest percentage drawdown that has occurred in any fund’s data record.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Looking at the maximum reduction from previous high of -6.9 days in the last 5 years of Vanguard Short Term Treasury Fund, we see it is relatively greater, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (-33.7 days)
- Looking at maximum DrawDown in of -6.9 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus better in comparison to SPY (-33.7 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:- The maximum days below previous high over 5 years of Vanguard Short Term Treasury Fund is 417 days, which is higher, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (271 days) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the maximum days under water is 417 days, which is higher, thus worse than the value of 271 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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (60 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the average time in days below previous high water mark of 92 days of Vanguard Short Term Treasury Fund is larger, thus worse.
- Looking at average time in days below previous high water mark in of 139 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to SPY (72 days).

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 Vanguard Short Term Treasury 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.