The World Country Top 4 Strategy is a momentum driven strategy that invests in the top four single country ETFs. It will add geographic diversity to your portfolio with significant non-U.S. equity exposure.

The strategy consists of four sub-strategies. Each sub-strategy invests in the best country ETF in a specific geographic area (i.e., Africa, Asia, Latin America, etc). These strategies are then combined to yield four country ETFs that come from different geographic segments, thus avoiding overconcentration. So even if one region is outperforming all the other areas, this strategy will still diversify among three additional top performing regions.

Like our other equity-based strategies, this strategy is hedged with a sub-strategy (HEDGE) that includes, amongst others, safe heaven assets like treasuries and gold.

Country ETFs:

- AFK Market Vectors Africa Index
- ASHR Deutsche X-Trackers CSI 300 China A Shares
- ECH iShares MSCI Chile Fund
- EGPT Market Vectors Egypt Index
- EIDO iShares MSCI Indonesia Index
- EIRL iShares MSCI Ireland Capped
- EIS iShares MSCI Israel
- ENZL iShares MSCI New Zealand Investable Market
- EPHE iShares MSCI Philippines
- EPI WisdomTree India Earnings Index
- EPOL iShares MSCI Poland Index
- EPU iShares MSCI Peru Index
- EWA iShares MSCI Australia Index Fund
- EWC iShares MSCI Canada Index Fund
- EWD iShares MSCI Sweden Index
- EWG iShares MSCI Germany Index
- EWH iShares MSCI Hong Kong Index Fund
- EWI iShares MSCI Italy Index
- EWJ iShares MSCI Japan Index Fund
- EWK iShares MSCI Belgium Index
- EWL iShares MSCI Switzerland
- EWM iShares MSCI Malaysia Index Fund
- EWN iShares MSCI Netherlands Index
- EWO iShares MSCI Austria Index
- EWP iShares MSCI Spain Index
- EWQ iShares MSCI France
- EWS iShares MSCI Singapore Index
- EWT iShares MSCI Taiwan Index Fund
- EWU iShares MSCI United Kingdom Index
- EWW iShares MSCI Mexico Index Fund
- EWY iShares MSCI South Korea Index Fund
- EWZ iShares MSCI Brazil Index Fund
- EZA iShares MSCI South Africa Index
- FM iShares MSCI Frontier Markets ETF
- FRN Guggenheim BNY Mellon Frontier Mkts
- FXI iShares FTSE China 25 Index Fund
- GAF SPDR S&P E.M. Middle East & Africa
- GULF WisdomTree Middle East Dividend Index
- GREK Global X FTSE Greece 20
- GXG Global X Interbolsa FTSE Colombia 20
- IDX Market Vectors Indonesia
- MCHI iShares MSCI China Index
- MES Market Vectors DJ Gulf States (GCC) Titans
- NORW Global X FTSE Norway 30 ETF
- QQQ PowerShares Nasdaq-100 Index
- RSX Market Vectors DAXglobal Russia
- THD iShares MSCI Thailand Index
- TUR iShares MSCI Turkey
- VNM Market Vectors Vietnam

'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:- Compared with the benchmark ACWI (63%) in the period of the last 5 years, the total return, or increase in value of 103.4% of World Top 4 Strategy is higher, thus better.
- Compared with ACWI (17.1%) in the period of the last 3 years, the total return, or increase in value of 33% is larger, 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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Looking at the compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.3% in the last 5 years of World Top 4 Strategy, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark ACWI (10.3%)
- During the last 3 years, the annual performance (CAGR) is 10%, which is greater, thus better than the value of 5.4% from the benchmark.

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- Looking at the volatility of 8.2% in the last 5 years of World Top 4 Strategy, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to the benchmark ACWI (19.9%)
- During the last 3 years, the volatility is 6.4%, which is lower, thus better than the value of 16.3% 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:- The downside volatility over 5 years of World Top 4 Strategy is 5.7%, which is lower, thus better compared to the benchmark ACWI (14.5%) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the downside volatility is 4.3%, which is lower, thus better than the value of 11.4% from the benchmark.

'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.'

Which means for our asset as example:- The risk / return profile (Sharpe) over 5 years of World Top 4 Strategy is 1.57, which is higher, thus better compared to the benchmark ACWI (0.39) in the same period.
- During the last 3 years, the risk / return profile (Sharpe) is 1.16, which is higher, thus better than the value of 0.18 from the benchmark.

'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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:- Compared with the benchmark ACWI (0.54) in the period of the last 5 years, the ratio of annual return and downside deviation of 2.24 of World Top 4 Strategy is greater, thus better.
- Compared with ACWI (0.26) in the period of the last 3 years, the downside risk / excess return profile of 1.75 is larger, thus better.

'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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Compared with the benchmark ACWI (9.95 ) in the period of the last 5 years, the Downside risk index of 2.68 of World Top 4 Strategy is lower, thus better.
- Compared with ACWI (11 ) in the period of the last 3 years, the Downside risk index of 2.82 is lower, thus better.

'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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:- Compared with the benchmark ACWI (-33.5 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum drop from peak to valley of -14.6 days of World Top 4 Strategy is larger, thus better.
- Compared with ACWI (-26.4 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum reduction from previous high of -8.1 days is greater, thus better.

'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 under water over 5 years of World Top 4 Strategy is 247 days, which is lower, thus better compared to the benchmark ACWI (516 days) in the same period.
- Compared with ACWI (516 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum time in days below previous high water mark of 247 days is lower, thus better.

'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 ACWI (133 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the average time in days below previous high water mark of 45 days of World Top 4 Strategy is lower, thus better.
- During the last 3 years, the average days under water is 61 days, which is lower, thus better than the value of 194 days from the benchmark.

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 World Top 4 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.