Description

This portfolio has been optimized for achieving the lowest possible historical volatility over the analyzed period with the involved assets. As such, it exhibits the least risk of all our portfolios, and is therefore suited especially for very risk adverse investors with conservative 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 algorithm based on Modern Portfolio Theory pioneered by Nobel Laureate Harry Markowitz. Using historical returns, the algorithm finds the asset allocation that produced the lowest volatility.

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%)
  • Global Market Rotation Strategy (GMRS) (0% to 100%)
  • Global Sector Rotation Strategy (GSRS) (0% to 100%)
  • Maximum Yield Strategy (MYRS) (0% to 100%)
  • Short Term Bond Strategy (STBS) (0% to 50%)
  • Universal Investment Strategy (UIS) (0% to 100%)
  • Universal Investment Strategy 2x Leverage (UISx2) (0% to 100%)
  • US Market Strategy (USMarket) (0% to 100%)
  • US Market Strategy 2x Leverage (USMx2) (0% to 100%)
  • US Sector Rotation Strategy (USSECT) (0% to 100%)
  • World Top 4 Strategy (WTOP4) (0% to 100%)

Statistics (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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (88.1%) in the period of the last 5 years, the total return, or performance of 35.2% of Minimum Volatility Portfolio is smaller, thus worse.
  • Looking at total return, or performance in of 10.7% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to SPY (26.1%).

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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (13.5%) in the period of the last 5 years, the compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.2% of Minimum Volatility Portfolio is smaller, thus worse.
  • Looking at annual return (CAGR) in of 3.5% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus worse in comparison to SPY (8.1%).

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:
  • The historical 30 days volatility over 5 years of Minimum Volatility Portfolio is 4.6%, which is lower, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (20.9%) in the same period.
  • Looking at volatility in of 2.9% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to SPY (17.3%).

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 Minimum Volatility Portfolio is 3.4%, which is smaller, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (15%) in the same period.
  • Looking at downside risk in of 1.9% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to SPY (12.1%).

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:
  • Looking at the ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) of 0.82 in the last 5 years of Minimum Volatility Portfolio, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (0.52)
  • Looking at ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) in of 0.33 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to SPY (0.32).

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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (0.73) in the period of the last 5 years, the ratio of annual return and downside deviation of 1.1 of Minimum Volatility Portfolio is larger, thus better.
  • Compared with SPY (0.46) in the period of the last 3 years, the ratio of annual return and downside deviation of 0.51 is greater, thus better.

Ulcer:

'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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Looking at the Ulcer Index of 1.48 in the last 5 years of Minimum Volatility Portfolio, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (9.33 )
  • Looking at Ulcer Index in of 1.13 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to SPY (10 ).

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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Looking at the maximum reduction from previous high of -12.1 days in the last 5 years of Minimum Volatility Portfolio, we see it is relatively greater, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (-33.7 days)
  • Compared with SPY (-24.5 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum drop from peak to valley of -2.7 days is greater, thus better.

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'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (488 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum time in days below previous high water mark of 291 days of Minimum Volatility Portfolio is smaller, thus better.
  • Compared with SPY (488 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum time in days below previous high water mark of 291 days is lower, thus better.

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 SPY (123 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the average days below previous high of 60 days of Minimum Volatility Portfolio is lower, thus better.
  • During the last 3 years, the average time in days below previous high water mark is 78 days, which is lower, thus better than the value of 179 days from the benchmark.

Performance (YTD)

Historical returns have been extended using synthetic data.

Allocations ()

Allocations

Returns (%)

  • Note that yearly returns do not equal the sum of monthly returns due to compounding.
  • Performance results of Minimum Volatility 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.