Description

The BUG strategy is one of our more conservative strategies. The strategy does not attempt to predict prices or the future state of the economy. It holds a broad diversified number of assets that complement each other, each performing well in a different economic environment such as inflation, deflation, growth and stagnation. It is meant for long term, steady growth and low risk.

It inherits part of its logic from Harry Browne's tried-and-true Permanent Portfolio and the publicized workings of the All-Weather portfolio.

The strategy has been updated (as of May 1st, 2020) to allocate 40%-60% to our HEDGE sub-strategy. The statistics below reflect the updated model.

Methodology & Assets
  • US Market (SPY: S&P 500 SPDRs)
  • Long Duration Treasuries (TLT: iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond)
  • Gold (GLD: Gold Shares SPDR)
  • Cash or equivalent (SHY: 1-3 Year Treasury Bonds)
  • Convertible Bonds (CWB: SPDR Barclays Convertible Securities)
  • Inflation Protected Treasuries (TIP: iShares TIPS Bond Fund)
  • Foreign Bonds (PCY: PowerShares Emerging Markets Sovereign Bond)

Statistics (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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Looking at the total return of 51.9% in the last 5 years of BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark AGG (16.6%)
  • Compared with AGG (12.7%) in the period of the last 3 years, the total return of 32.3% is larger, thus better.

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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Looking at the annual return (CAGR) of 8.7% in the last 5 years of BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark AGG (3.1%)
  • Looking at annual performance (CAGR) in of 9.7% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus better in comparison to AGG (4%).

Volatility:

'In finance, volatility (symbol σ) is the degree of variation of a trading price series over time as measured by the standard deviation of logarithmic returns. Historic volatility measures a time series of past market prices. Implied volatility looks forward in time, being derived from the market price of a market-traded derivative (in particular, an option). Commonly, the higher the volatility, the riskier the security.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Compared with the benchmark AGG (4.7%) in the period of the last 5 years, the historical 30 days volatility of 7.4% of BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy is larger, thus worse.
  • Looking at volatility in of 8.8% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus worse in comparison to AGG (5.6%).

DownVol:

'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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Compared with the benchmark AGG (3.5%) in the period of the last 5 years, the downside deviation of 5.6% of BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy is greater, thus worse.
  • During the last 3 years, the downside risk is 6.7%, which is larger, thus worse than the value of 4.3% from the benchmark.

Sharpe:

'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:
  • The ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) over 5 years of BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy is 0.85, which is greater, thus better compared to the benchmark AGG (0.13) in the same period.
  • Looking at risk / return profile (Sharpe) in of 0.83 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus better in comparison to AGG (0.28).

Sortino:

'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:
  • The downside risk / excess return profile over 5 years of BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy is 1.12, which is greater, thus better compared to the benchmark AGG (0.18) in the same period.
  • During the last 3 years, the ratio of annual return and downside deviation is 1.08, which is higher, thus better than the value of 0.36 from the benchmark.

Ulcer:

'The Ulcer Index is a technical indicator that measures downside risk, in terms of both the depth and duration of price declines. The index increases in value as the price moves farther away from a recent high and falls as the price rises to new highs. The indicator is usually calculated over a 14-day period, with the Ulcer Index showing the percentage drawdown a trader can expect from the high over that period. The greater the value of the Ulcer Index, the longer it takes for a stock to get back to the former high.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • The Downside risk index over 5 years of BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy is 2.52 , which is greater, thus worse compared to the benchmark AGG (1.65 ) in the same period.
  • During the last 3 years, the Downside risk index is 2.65 , which is higher, thus worse than the value of 1.64 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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Compared with the benchmark AGG (-9.6 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum reduction from previous high of -18.6 days of BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy is lower, thus worse.
  • During the last 3 years, the maximum reduction from previous high is -18.6 days, which is smaller, thus worse than the value of -9.6 days from the benchmark.

MaxDuration:

'The Maximum 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. It is the length of time the account was in the Max Drawdown. A Max Drawdown measures a retrenchment from when an equity curve reaches a new high. It’s the maximum an account lost during that retrenchment. This method is applied because a valley can’t be measured until a new high occurs. Once the new high is reached, the percentage change from the old high to the bottom of the largest trough is recorded.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • Looking at the maximum time in days below previous high water mark of 247 days in the last 5 years of BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to the benchmark AGG (366 days)
  • Compared with AGG (366 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum days under water of 100 days is lower, thus better.

AveDuration:

'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:
  • Looking at the average days under water of 47 days in the last 5 years of BUG Permanent Portfolio Strategy, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to the benchmark AGG (113 days)
  • Compared with AGG (110 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the average time in days below previous high water mark of 28 days is lower, thus better.

Performance (YTD)

Historical returns have been extended using synthetic data.

Allocations
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Allocations

Returns (%)

  • Note that yearly returns do not equal the sum of monthly returns due to compounding.
  • Performance results of BUG Permanent Portfolio 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.