Description of Max Sharpe Portfolio

This portfolio has been optimized to provide the highest Sharpe Ratio, which is a metric that compares the amount of return versus the amount of risk, based on historical data. Return is based on CAGR and risk is based on volatility. The portfolio is well suited for risk adverse investors with moderate growth expectations.

Please note that this portfolio might use leveraged ETF and single stocks. Should these not be allowed in your retirement account please see our 401k and IRS compatible Conservative, Moderate, and Aggressive Risk Portfolios. Contact us for special requirements.

Methodology & Assets
This portfolio is constructed by our proprietary optimization alogrithm based on Modern Portfolio Theory pioneered by Nobel Laureate Harry Markowitz. Using historical returns, the algorithm finds the asset allocation that produced the highest Sharpe ratio.

While this portfolio provides an optimized asset allocation based on historical returns, your investment objectives, risk profile and personal experience are important factors when deciding on the best investment vehicle for yourself. You can also use the Portfolio Builder or Portfolio Optimizer to construct your own personalized portfolio.

Assets and weight constraints used in the optimizer process:
  • Bond ETF Rotation Strategy (BRS) (0% to 100%)
  • BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy (BUG) (0% to 100%)
  • World Top 4 Strategy (WTOP4) (0% to 100%)
  • Global Sector Rotation Strategy (GSRS) (0% to 100%)
  • Global Market Rotation Strategy (GMRS) (0% to 100%)
  • Maximum Yield Strategy (MYRS) (0% to 100%)
  • NASDAQ 100 Strategy (NAS100) (0% to 100%)
  • Leveraged Gold-Currency Strategy (GLD-USD) (0% to 100%)
  • US Sector Rotation Strategy (USSECT) (0% to 100%)
  • Leveraged Universal Investment Strategy (UISx3) (0% to 100%)
  • US Market Strategy (USMarket) (0% to 100%)
  • Dow 30 Strategy (DOW30) (0% to 100%)
  • Universal Investment Strategy (UIS) (0% to 100%)

Statistics of Max Sharpe Portfolio (YTD)

What do these metrics mean? [Read More] [Hide]

TotalReturn:

'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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Looking at the total return, or increase in value of 129.9% in the last 5 years of Max Sharpe Portfolio, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (66.2%)
  • During the last 3 years, the total return is 62%, which is higher, thus better than the value of 47.5% from the benchmark.

CAGR:

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (10.7%) in the period of the last 5 years, the compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.1% of Max Sharpe Portfolio is greater, thus better.
  • Compared with SPY (13.9%) in the period of the last 3 years, the annual return (CAGR) of 17.5% is higher, thus better.

Volatility:

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (13.3%) in the period of the last 5 years, the 30 days standard deviation of 8.2% of Max Sharpe Portfolio is lower, thus better.
  • During the last 3 years, the 30 days standard deviation is 7.6%, which is lower, thus better than the value of 12.5% from the benchmark.

DownVol:

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

Which means for our asset as example:
  • The downside deviation over 5 years of Max Sharpe Portfolio is 9.3%, which is lower, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (14.6%) in the same period.
  • Compared with SPY (14.2%) in the period of the last 3 years, the downside deviation of 8.6% is smaller, thus better.

Sharpe:

'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:
  • The ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) over 5 years of Max Sharpe Portfolio is 1.9, which is higher, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (0.62) in the same period.
  • Looking at Sharpe Ratio in of 1.98 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to SPY (0.91).

Sortino:

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Looking at the excess return divided by the downside deviation of 1.68 in the last 5 years of Max Sharpe Portfolio, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (0.56)
  • Compared with SPY (0.8) in the period of the last 3 years, the ratio of annual return and downside deviation of 1.74 is greater, thus better.

Ulcer:

'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:
  • Looking at the Downside risk index of 1.46 in the last 5 years of Max Sharpe Portfolio, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (3.96 )
  • During the last 3 years, the Ulcer Ratio is 1.35 , which is smaller, thus worse than the value of 4.01 from the benchmark.

MaxDD:

'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 (-19.3 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum drop from peak to valley of -6.4 days of Max Sharpe Portfolio is larger, thus better.
  • During the last 3 years, the maximum reduction from previous high is -5.1 days, which is greater, thus better than the value of -19.3 days from the benchmark.

MaxDuration:

'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) in days.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • The maximum days under water over 5 years of Max Sharpe Portfolio is 75 days, which is lower, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (187 days) in the same period.
  • During the last 3 years, the maximum time in days below previous high water mark is 75 days, which is lower, thus better than the value of 139 days from the benchmark.

AveDuration:

'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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Looking at the average days under water of 16 days in the last 5 years of Max Sharpe Portfolio, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (41 days)
  • During the last 3 years, the average time in days below previous high water mark is 18 days, which is lower, thus better than the value of 36 days from the benchmark.

Performance of Max Sharpe Portfolio (YTD)

Historical returns have been extended using synthetic data.

Allocations of Max Sharpe Portfolio
()

Allocations

Returns of Max Sharpe Portfolio (%)

  • "Year" returns in the table above are not equal to the sum of monthly returns due to compounding.
  • Performance results of Max Sharpe 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.