Description of Dow 30 Strategy

The Dow 30 strategy is a good way to invest in the best of the Dow 30 blue chips while avoiding the old fashioned underperforming members of the Dow 30 index.

The strategy uses a risk-adjusted momentum algorithm to choose the top four Dow 30 stocks with a variable allocation to treasuries or gold to smooth the equity curve and provide crash protection in bear markets. The strategy combines well with our more conservative strategies, such as the Bond Rotation Strategy or BUG, or with one of our non-U.S. equity strategies such as World Top 4, to form a well balanced portfolio.

The performance of the Dow 30 strategy is quite similar to the simpler US Market Strategy, however in volatile markets like this year, the stock picking Dow 30 outperformed. Notably, the February drawdown was only half of the US Market Strategy as the Dow Strategy excludes high volatility stocks. 

Statistics of Dow 30 Strategy (YTD)

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

TotalReturn:

'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, or increase in value over 5 years of Dow 30 Strategy is 86.1%, which is higher, thus better compared to the benchmark DIA (76.4%) in the same period.
  • During the last 3 years, the total return is 32.3%, which is smaller, thus worse than the value of 57.1% from the benchmark.

CAGR:

'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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • The annual return (CAGR) over 5 years of Dow 30 Strategy is 13.2%, which is larger, thus better compared to the benchmark DIA (12%) in the same period.
  • Looking at compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) in of 9.8% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to DIA (16.3%).

Volatility:

'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 volatility of 8.8% in the last 5 years of Dow 30 Strategy, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to the benchmark DIA (13.6%)
  • During the last 3 years, the 30 days standard deviation is 8.5%, which is lower, thus better than the value of 13.1% from the benchmark.

DownVol:

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • The downside deviation over 5 years of Dow 30 Strategy is 9.8%, which is smaller, thus better compared to the benchmark DIA (15.1%) in the same period.
  • Compared with DIA (15.1%) in the period of the last 3 years, the downside risk of 9.9% is smaller, thus better.

Sharpe:

'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:
  • Looking at the risk / return profile (Sharpe) of 1.23 in the last 5 years of Dow 30 Strategy, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark DIA (0.7)
  • During the last 3 years, the ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) is 0.86, which is lower, thus worse than the value of 1.05 from the benchmark.

Sortino:

'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 downside risk / excess return profile of 1.09 in the last 5 years of Dow 30 Strategy, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark DIA (0.63)
  • Compared with DIA (0.91) in the period of the last 3 years, the downside risk / excess return profile of 0.74 is smaller, thus worse.

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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Looking at the Ulcer Index of 3.46 in the last 5 years of Dow 30 Strategy, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to the benchmark DIA (4.26 )
  • During the last 3 years, the Ulcer Index is 3.94 , which is lower, thus better than the value of 4.23 from the benchmark.

MaxDD:

'Maximum drawdown measures the loss in any losing period during a fund’s investment record. It is defined as the percent retrenchment from a fund’s peak value to the fund’s valley value. The drawdown is in effect from the time the fund’s retrenchment begins until a new fund high is reached. The maximum drawdown encompasses both the period from the fund’s peak to the fund’s valley (length), and the time from the fund’s valley to a new fund high (recovery). It measures the largest percentage drawdown that has occurred in any fund’s data record.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • Looking at the maximum drop from peak to valley of -12.7 days in the last 5 years of Dow 30 Strategy, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark DIA (-18.1 days)
  • Looking at maximum reduction from previous high in of -12.7 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to DIA (-18.1 days).

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). 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'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Compared with the benchmark DIA (227 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum time in days below previous high water mark of 186 days of Dow 30 Strategy is lower, thus better.
  • During the last 3 years, the maximum time in days below previous high water mark is 186 days, which is higher, thus worse than the value of 161 days from the benchmark.

AveDuration:

'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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Compared with the benchmark DIA (54 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the average days under water of 39 days of Dow 30 Strategy is smaller, thus better.
  • During the last 3 years, the average time in days below previous high water mark is 44 days, which is lower, thus better than the value of 45 days from the benchmark.

Performance of Dow 30 Strategy (YTD)

Historical returns have been extended using synthetic data.

Allocations of Dow 30 Strategy
()

Allocations

Returns of Dow 30 Strategy (%)

  • Note that yearly returns do not equal the sum of monthly returns due to compounding.
  • Performance results of Dow 30 Strategy 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.