Description of NASDAQ 100 Strategy

The Nasdaq 100 Strategy is a good way to ride the extraordinary momentum of the Nasdaq 100 Index while keeping some protection from market downturns. It is also a great alternative for stock-pickers looking for a rules-based stock selection strategy.

The strategy uses a risk-adjusted momentum algorithm to choose the top four Nasdaq 100 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 existence of price momentum has been heavily studied and well documented over the years. It reveals itself in assets that have strong absolute performance or performance relative to their peers. Logical Invest has exploited asset class and sector momentum in many of our strategies for years. We have found individual stock momentum tends to be an even stronger force, particularly in the top NASDAQ stocks. When properly identified, it can be capitalized on to provide an investment edge.

During bull markets, and especially "risk off" periods, the strongest NASDAQ stocks typically beat the market handily. However, they can also get ahead of themselves which makes them more vulnerable during "risk on" periods. To manage those challenges, the strategy incorporates several advanced methodologies:

  1. Mean Reversion - Momentum is based on the principle of buying high and selling higher, however, as most investors have experienced, stocks that rise too quickly can also have short-term corrections. The strategy uses a mean reversion component to penalize stocks that rise too much or too fast.
  2. Protection - The strategy allocates a portion to treasuries to balance out the supercharged Nasdaq momentum stocks. This improves risk adjusted returns and moderates strategy drawdowns. The model also allocates more to treasuries if the overall Nasdaq 100 index exhibits momentum weakness.
  3. Intelligent Ranking - Our algorithms ensures we get the right blend of stocks that work well together and have an allocation to each individual stock that reflects its volatility in relation to other stocks.
Methodology & Assets

The model chooses four individual stocks from the NASDAQ 100 stock index. So depending on what stocks are in the NASDAQ 100, the stock rotation formula might include the new ones.

Additionally, the model may allocate some funds to TMF (Direxion 3x leveraged 20-yr Treasury) or to UGLD (VelocityShares 3x Long Gold ETN). This helps mitigate risk during certain market environments.

You may also use one of the alternative versions:

NASDAQ 100 Balanced unhedged Strategy
NASDAQ 100 Leaders Strategy
NASDAQ 100 Low volatility Strategy

Statistics of NASDAQ 100 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:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (83.5%) in the period of the last 5 years, the total return, or performance of 143% of NASDAQ 100 Strategy is higher, thus better.
  • During the last 3 years, the total return, or performance is 95.5%, which is larger, thus better than the value of 54.3% from the benchmark.

CAGR:

'Compound annual growth rate (CAGR) is a business and investing specific term for the geometric progression ratio that provides a constant rate of return over the time period. CAGR is not an accounting term, but it is often used to describe some element of the business, for example revenue, units delivered, registered users, etc. CAGR dampens the effect of volatility of periodic returns that can render arithmetic means irrelevant. It is particularly useful to compare growth rates from various data sets of common domain such as revenue growth of companies in the same industry.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Looking at the annual return (CAGR) of 19.5% in the last 5 years of NASDAQ 100 Strategy, we see it is relatively greater, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (12.9%)
  • Looking at annual return (CAGR) in of 25% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively greater, thus better in comparison to SPY (15.5%).

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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • The volatility over 5 years of NASDAQ 100 Strategy is 8.4%, which is lower, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (13.3%) in the same period.
  • Compared with SPY (12.8%) in the period of the last 3 years, the volatility of 8.5% is lower, thus better.

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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Looking at the downside risk of 9.3% in the last 5 years of NASDAQ 100 Strategy, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (14.8%)
  • Compared with SPY (14.8%) in the period of the last 3 years, the downside volatility of 9.5% is smaller, thus better.

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:
  • The risk / return profile (Sharpe) over 5 years of NASDAQ 100 Strategy is 2.01, which is larger, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (0.78) in the same period.
  • Compared with SPY (1.02) in the period of the last 3 years, the ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) of 2.66 is higher, thus better.

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 ratio of annual return and downside deviation of 1.82 in the last 5 years of NASDAQ 100 Strategy, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (0.7)
  • Compared with SPY (0.88) in the period of the last 3 years, the excess return divided by the downside deviation of 2.37 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:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (3.97 ) in the period of the last 5 years, the Downside risk index of 1.95 of NASDAQ 100 Strategy is lower, thus better.
  • Looking at Ulcer Index in of 1.5 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to SPY (4.09 ).

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:
  • The maximum DrawDown over 5 years of NASDAQ 100 Strategy is -6.6 days, which is greater, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (-19.3 days) in the same period.
  • Compared with SPY (-19.3 days) in the period of the last 3 years, the maximum reduction from previous high of -6.3 days is larger, 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'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Looking at the maximum days under water of 143 days in the last 5 years of NASDAQ 100 Strategy, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (187 days)
  • Looking at maximum days under water in of 93 days in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to SPY (139 days).

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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • The average days under water over 5 years of NASDAQ 100 Strategy is 29 days, which is smaller, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (42 days) in the same period.
  • During the last 3 years, the average days under water is 20 days, which is lower, thus better than the value of 37 days from the benchmark.

Performance of NASDAQ 100 Strategy (YTD)

Historical returns have been extended using synthetic data.

Allocations of NASDAQ 100 Strategy
()

Allocations

Returns of NASDAQ 100 Strategy (%)

  • Note that yearly returns do not equal the sum of monthly returns due to compounding.
  • Performance results of NASDAQ 100 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.