'Total return, when measuring performance, is the actual rate of return of an investment or a pool of investments over a given evaluation period. Total return includes interest, capital gains, dividends and distributions realized over a given period of time. Total return accounts for two categories of return: income including interest paid by fixed-income investments, distributions or dividends and capital appreciation, representing the change in the market price of an asset.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (120.8%) in the period of the last 5 years, the total return of 134.7% of VeriSign is larger, thus better.
- Compared with SPY (66.3%) in the period of the last 3 years, the total return of 70.6% is higher, thus better.

'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:- Looking at the annual return (CAGR) of 18.6% in the last 5 years of VeriSign, we see it is relatively greater, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (17.2%)
- Looking at annual performance (CAGR) in of 19.5% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to SPY (18.5%).

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Compared with the benchmark SPY (18.7%) in the period of the last 5 years, the 30 days standard deviation of 27.3% of VeriSign is higher, thus worse.
- During the last 3 years, the volatility is 31.2%, which is larger, thus worse than the value of 22.4% from the benchmark.

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

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Looking at the downside volatility of 18.2% in the last 5 years of VeriSign, we see it is relatively higher, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (13.6%)
- Compared with SPY (16.3%) in the period of the last 3 years, the downside deviation of 20.6% is greater, 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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- The risk / return profile (Sharpe) over 5 years of VeriSign is 0.59, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.78) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (0.71) in the period of the last 3 years, the ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) of 0.54 is lower, thus worse.

'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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Looking at the ratio of annual return and downside deviation of 0.88 in the last 5 years of VeriSign, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (1.08)
- Compared with SPY (0.98) in the period of the last 3 years, the excess return divided by the downside deviation of 0.83 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:- Looking at the Downside risk index of 8.06 in the last 5 years of VeriSign, we see it is relatively higher, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (5.59 )
- Looking at Ulcer Index in of 8.69 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively greater, thus worse in comparison to SPY (6.83 ).

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The maximum DrawDown over 5 years of VeriSign is -31.6 days, which is larger, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (-33.7 days) in the same period.
- Looking at maximum DrawDown in of -31.6 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively larger, 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) in days.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The maximum days below previous high over 5 years of VeriSign is 443 days, which is greater, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (139 days) in the same period.
- Looking at maximum days under water in of 443 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively greater, thus worse 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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- The average time in days below previous high water mark over 5 years of VeriSign is 122 days, which is greater, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (33 days) in the same period.
- Compared with SPY (35 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the average days under water of 150 days is larger, 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 VeriSign 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.