Ted Aronson is an asset manager. His family taxable account portfolio has been featured and tracked by MarketWatch.com's lazy portfolios, maintained by Paul Farrel. The lazy portfolio has done very well prior to 2008-2009 crash.

The portfolio consists of the following index funds and their ETF substitutes:

- 20% in Vanguard Emerging Markets Stock Index (VEIEX) --- ETF: VWO

- 15% in Vanguard 500 Index (VFINX) --- ETF: VOO

- 15% in Vanguard Pacific Stock Index (VPACX) -- ETF: VPL

- 10% in Vanguard Extended Market Index (VEXMX) -- ETF: VXF

- 10% in Vanguard Inflation-Protected Securities (VIPSX) -- ETF: TIP

- 5% in Vanguard European Stock Index (VEURX) --- ETF: VGK

- 5% in Vanguard High-Yield Corporate (VWEHX) --- ETF: JNK

- 5% in Vanguard Long-Term U.S. Treasury (VUSTX) -- ETF: VGLT

- 5% in Vanguard Small Cap Growth (VISGX) --- ETF: VBK

- 5% in Vanguard Small Cap Value Index (VISVX) --- ETF: VBR

- 5% in Vanguard Total Stock Market Index (VTSMX) --- ETF: VTI

The Aronson Family Taxable ETF Lazy Portfolio consists of 11 funds.

Asset Class | Ticker | Name |
---|---|---|

DIVERSIFIED EMERGING MKTS | VWO | Vanguard Emerging Markets Stock ETF |

LARGE BLEND | VOO | Vanguard S&P 500 ETF |

DIVERSIFIED PACIFIC/ASIA | VPL | Vanguard Pacific Stock ETF |

MID-CAP BLEND | VXF | Vanguard Extended Market Index ETF |

Inflation-Protected Bond | TIP | iShares Barclays TIPS Bond |

EUROPE STOCK | VGK | Vanguard European ETF |

High Yield Bond | JNK | SPDR Barclays Capital High Yield Bond |

LONG GOVERNMENT | VGLT | Vanguard Long-Term Govt Bd Idx ETF |

Small Growth | VBK | Vanguard Small Cap Growth ETF |

SMALL VALUE | VBR | Vanguard Small Cap Value ETF |

LARGE BLEND | VTI | Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF |

'The total return on a portfolio of investments takes into account not only the capital appreciation on the portfolio, but also the income received on the portfolio. The income typically consists of interest, dividends, and securities lending fees. This contrasts with the price return, which takes into account only the capital gain on an investment.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Looking at the total return of 28.5% in the last 5 years of Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (59.9%)
- Compared with SPY (34.2%) in the period of the last 3 years, the total return of 17.9% 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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Looking at the compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.1% in the last 5 years of Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (9.8%)
- Compared with SPY (10.3%) in the period of the last 3 years, the compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.6% is lower, thus worse.

'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 11.7% in the last 5 years of Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (18.7%)
- Compared with SPY (21.5%) in the period of the last 3 years, the volatility of 13% is lower, thus better.

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (13.6%) in the period of the last 5 years, the downside risk of 8.8% of Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio is lower, thus better.
- During the last 3 years, the downside volatility is 9.9%, which is lower, thus better than the value of 15.7% from the benchmark.

'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:- The risk / return profile (Sharpe) over 5 years of Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio is 0.23, which is smaller, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.39) in the same period.
- Looking at risk / return profile (Sharpe) in of 0.24 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to SPY (0.36).

'The Sortino ratio measures the risk-adjusted return of an investment asset, portfolio, or strategy. It is a modification of the Sharpe ratio but penalizes only those returns falling below a user-specified target or required rate of return, while the Sharpe ratio penalizes both upside and downside volatility equally. Though both ratios measure an investment's risk-adjusted return, they do so in significantly different ways that will frequently lead to differing conclusions as to the true nature of the investment's return-generating efficiency. The Sortino ratio is used as a way to compare the risk-adjusted performance of programs with differing risk and return profiles. In general, risk-adjusted returns seek to normalize the risk across programs and then see which has the higher return unit per risk.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- The downside risk / excess return profile over 5 years of Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio is 0.3, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.54) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (0.5) in the period of the last 3 years, the excess return divided by the downside deviation of 0.32 is smaller, 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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- The Ulcer Ratio over 5 years of Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio is 5.23 , which is smaller, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (5.81 ) in the same period.
- Looking at Ulcer Ratio in of 5.44 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to SPY (6.86 ).

'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 reduction from previous high of -24.3 days of Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio is higher, thus better.
- During the last 3 years, the maximum DrawDown is -24.3 days, which is higher, thus better 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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (187 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum days under water of 350 days of Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio is greater, thus worse.
- Compared with SPY (139 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum days under water of 350 days is larger, 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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Looking at the average days under water of 95 days in the last 5 years of Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio, we see it is relatively greater, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (43 days)
- Compared with SPY (39 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the average days under water of 100 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 Aronson Family Taxable Portfolio 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.