Description

This is the low volatility version of the Global Sector Rotation Strategy and is used as a sub-strategy. It picks on a monthly basis the top two performing global sectors.

Methodology & Assets

EEM – iShares MSCI Emerging Markets
DBEM – Emerging Markets Equity Fund
EPP – iShares MSCI Pacific ex-Japan
DBAP – MSCI AC Asia Pacific ex Japan Hedged Equity Fund
FEZ – SPDR Euro STOXX 50
HEDJ – Europe Hedged Equity Fund
IHDG – WisdomTree Int’l Hedged Quality Divident ETF
MDY – S&P MidCap 400

From the HEDGE sub-strategy:
GLD – SPDR Gold Shares
TLT– iShares Barclays Long-Term Treasury (15-18yr)

From the Short Sectors sub-strategy:
SMN - ProShares UltraShort Basic Materials
ERY - Direxion Daily Energy Bear 3X ETF
SKF - ProShares UltraShort Financials
SIJ - ProShares UltraShort Industrial
REW - ProShares UltraShort Technolog
RXD - ProShares UltraShort Health Car
SCC - ProShares UltraShort Consumer Service
SDP - ProShares UltraShort Utilitie
SZK - ProShares UltraShort Consumer Goods

Statistics (YTD)

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

TotalReturn:

'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:
  • The total return over 5 years of GSRS Low Volatility Sub-strategy is 41.8%, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (115.6%) in the same period.
  • Looking at total return, or increase in value in of 9% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to SPY (43%).

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 performance (CAGR) over 5 years of GSRS Low Volatility Sub-strategy is 7.2%, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (16.6%) in the same period.
  • During the last 3 years, the annual return (CAGR) is 2.9%, which is lower, thus worse than the value of 12.6% from the benchmark.

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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (18.8%) in the period of the last 5 years, the historical 30 days volatility of 15.3% of GSRS Low Volatility Sub-strategy is lower, thus better.
  • Looking at 30 days standard deviation in of 17.9% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to SPY (22.8%).

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:
  • The downside volatility over 5 years of GSRS Low Volatility Sub-strategy is 11.8%, which is smaller, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (13.6%) in the same period.
  • During the last 3 years, the downside deviation is 14.1%, which is lower, thus better than the value of 16.7% from the benchmark.

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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • The ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) over 5 years of GSRS Low Volatility Sub-strategy is 0.31, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (0.75) in the same period.
  • Looking at ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) in of 0.02 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to SPY (0.44).

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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Looking at the downside risk / excess return profile of 0.4 in the last 5 years of GSRS Low Volatility Sub-strategy, we see it is relatively smaller, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (1.04)
  • During the last 3 years, the ratio of annual return and downside deviation is 0.03, which is smaller, thus worse than the value of 0.61 from the benchmark.

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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Looking at the Ulcer Index of 10 in the last 5 years of GSRS Low Volatility Sub-strategy, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (5.59 )
  • During the last 3 years, the Downside risk index is 13 , which is greater, thus worse than the value of 7.14 from the benchmark.

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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • The maximum reduction from previous high over 5 years of GSRS Low Volatility Sub-strategy is -43.4 days, which is lower, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (-33.7 days) in the same period.
  • Compared with SPY (-33.7 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum drop from peak to valley of -43.4 days is lower, thus worse.

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) in days.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (139 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum days under water of 248 days of GSRS Low Volatility Sub-strategy is higher, thus worse.
  • Looking at maximum days under water in of 248 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to SPY (139 days).

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:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (33 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the average time in days below previous high water mark of 68 days of GSRS Low Volatility Sub-strategy is higher, thus worse.
  • Looking at average days below previous high in of 87 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus worse in comparison to SPY (45 days).

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 GSRS Low Volatility Sub-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.