'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Looking at the total return of 258% in the last 5 years of Caterpillar, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (121.2%)
- During the last 3 years, the total return, or increase in value is 74.9%, which is greater, thus better than the value of 67.5% 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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Looking at the annual performance (CAGR) of 29.1% in the last 5 years of Caterpillar, we see it is relatively higher, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (17.2%)
- During the last 3 years, the annual performance (CAGR) is 20.5%, which is higher, thus better than the value of 18.7% from the benchmark.

'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 31.2% in the last 5 years of Caterpillar, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (18.7%)
- Looking at volatility in of 35.3% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to SPY (22.5%).

'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:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (13.6%) in the period of the last 5 years, the downside deviation of 21.7% of Caterpillar is greater, thus worse.
- Compared with SPY (16.3%) in the period of the last 3 years, the downside deviation of 25% is higher, thus worse.

'The Sharpe ratio (also known as the Sharpe index, the Sharpe measure, and the reward-to-variability ratio) is a way to examine the performance of an investment by adjusting for its risk. The ratio measures the excess return (or risk premium) per unit of deviation in an investment asset or a trading strategy, typically referred to as risk, named after William F. Sharpe.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) over 5 years of Caterpillar is 0.85, which is higher, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (0.79) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the Sharpe Ratio is 0.51, which is lower, thus worse than the value of 0.72 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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The excess return divided by the downside deviation over 5 years of Caterpillar is 1.22, which is greater, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (1.08) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the downside risk / excess return profile is 0.72, which is lower, thus worse than the value of 1 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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Looking at the Ulcer Ratio of 15 in the last 5 years of Caterpillar, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (5.59 )
- During the last 3 years, the Downside risk index is 14 , which is higher, thus worse than the value of 6.83 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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The maximum reduction from previous high over 5 years of Caterpillar is -43.4 days, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (-33.7 days) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (-33.7 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum drop from peak to valley of -39.5 days is smaller, thus worse.

'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:- Looking at the maximum time in days below previous high water mark of 685 days in the last 5 years of Caterpillar, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (139 days)
- Looking at maximum time in days below previous high water mark in of 485 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus worse in comparison to SPY (139 days).

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (33 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the average days under water of 211 days of Caterpillar is greater, thus worse.
- Compared with SPY (35 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the average days under water of 173 days is higher, thus worse.

Historical returns have been extended using synthetic data.
[Show Details]

- Note that yearly returns do not equal the sum of monthly returns due to compounding.
- Performance results of Caterpillar 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.