'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- The total return over 5 years of Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund is 32.9%, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (67.9%) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (38.6%) in the period of the last 3 years, the total return, or performance of 14.1% is smaller, thus worse.

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (10.9%) in the period of the last 5 years, the annual performance (CAGR) of 5.9% of Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund is lower, thus worse.
- Compared with SPY (11.5%) in the period of the last 3 years, the annual return (CAGR) of 4.5% is smaller, thus worse.

'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 (18.7%) in the period of the last 5 years, the historical 30 days volatility of 22.2% of Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund is higher, thus worse.
- Compared with SPY (21.5%) in the period of the last 3 years, the 30 days standard deviation of 25.5% is greater, thus worse.

'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:- The downside volatility over 5 years of Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund is 16.7%, which is higher, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (13.6%) in the same period.
- Looking at downside volatility in of 19.4% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus worse in comparison to SPY (15.7%).

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (0.45) in the period of the last 5 years, the ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) of 0.15 of Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund is lower, thus worse.
- Compared with SPY (0.42) in the period of the last 3 years, the ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) of 0.08 is lower, thus worse.

'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:- Looking at the ratio of annual return and downside deviation of 0.2 in the last 5 years of Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (0.62)
- Compared with SPY (0.57) in the period of the last 3 years, the excess return divided by the downside deviation of 0.1 is lower, thus worse.

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- The Downside risk index over 5 years of Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund is 8.48 , which is larger, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (5.82 ) in the same period.
- Looking at Downside risk index in of 8.88 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to SPY (6.87 ).

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- The maximum drop from peak to valley over 5 years of Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund is -42.3 days, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (-33.7 days) in the same period.
- Looking at maximum reduction from previous high in of -42.3 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse 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'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- The maximum days under water over 5 years of Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund is 628 days, which is larger, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (187 days) in the same period.
- Looking at maximum days under water in of 136 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to SPY (139 days).

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (43 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the average days under water of 177 days of Vanguard Real Estate Index Fund is higher, thus worse.
- Looking at average days below previous high in of 30 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to SPY (39 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 Real Estate Index 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.