Description

The classic permanent portfolio was created by Harry Browne. The idea was that a portfolio should be diversified enough to get you through a wide variety of economic and market environments and simple enough that even a child could do it. Originally it consisted of the following allocations:

  • 25% in U.S. stocks
  • 25% in long-term bonds
  • 25% in gold
  • 25% in cash

The Logical Invest permanent portfolio is somewhat more sophisticated, rebalances monthly and is not always split evenly across the three main assets. It can adapt to market conditions by putting more weight on gold or treasuries and less on equity depending on market conditions.

Methodology & Assets
  • US Market (SPY: S&P 500 SPDRs)
  • Long Duration Treasuries (TLT: iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond)
  • Gold (GLD: Gold Shares SPDR)

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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (122.1%) in the period of the last 5 years, the total return, or increase in value of 56.5% of Enhanced Permanent Portfolio Strategy is smaller, thus worse.
  • Compared with SPY (64.6%) in the period of the last 3 years, the total return, or performance of 39.1% is lower, thus worse.

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:
  • The annual return (CAGR) over 5 years of Enhanced Permanent Portfolio Strategy is 9.4%, which is smaller, thus worse compared to the benchmark SPY (17.3%) in the same period.
  • Compared with SPY (18.1%) in the period of the last 3 years, the annual return (CAGR) of 11.6% is smaller, thus worse.

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.'

Using this definition on our asset we see for example:
  • Looking at the historical 30 days volatility of 8.6% in the last 5 years of Enhanced Permanent Portfolio Strategy, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (18.7%)
  • During the last 3 years, the 30 days standard deviation is 9.7%, which is lower, thus better than the value of 22.5% from the benchmark.

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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • The downside volatility over 5 years of Enhanced Permanent Portfolio Strategy is 6.3%, which is lower, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (13.6%) in the same period.
  • Looking at downside deviation in of 7.1% in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively smaller, thus better in comparison to SPY (16.4%).

Sharpe:

'The Sharpe ratio is the measure of risk-adjusted return of a financial portfolio. Sharpe ratio is a measure of excess portfolio return over the risk-free rate relative to its standard deviation. Normally, the 90-day Treasury bill rate is taken as the proxy for risk-free rate. A portfolio with a higher Sharpe ratio is considered superior relative to its peers. The measure was named after William F Sharpe, a Nobel laureate and professor of finance, emeritus at Stanford University.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Looking at the Sharpe Ratio of 0.8 in the last 5 years of Enhanced Permanent Portfolio Strategy, we see it is relatively larger, thus better in comparison to the benchmark SPY (0.79)
  • During the last 3 years, the ratio of return and volatility (Sharpe) is 0.94, which is greater, thus better than the value of 0.69 from the benchmark.

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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • The downside risk / excess return profile over 5 years of Enhanced Permanent Portfolio Strategy is 1.09, which is greater, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (1.09) in the same period.
  • Looking at ratio of annual return and downside deviation in of 1.28 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively higher, thus better in comparison to SPY (0.95).

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 Ulcer Index over 5 years of Enhanced Permanent Portfolio Strategy is 3.36 , which is smaller, thus better compared to the benchmark SPY (5.58 ) in the same period.
  • Looking at Ulcer Ratio in of 3.15 in the period of the last 3 years, we see it is relatively lower, thus better in comparison to SPY (6.83 ).

MaxDD:

'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 SPY (-33.7 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum DrawDown of -17.4 days of Enhanced Permanent Portfolio Strategy is higher, thus better.
  • During the last 3 years, the maximum reduction from previous high is -17.4 days, which is larger, thus better than the value of -33.7 days from the benchmark.

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.'

Which means for our asset as example:
  • Compared with the benchmark SPY (139 days) in the period of the last 5 years, the maximum time in days below previous high water mark of 289 days of Enhanced Permanent Portfolio Strategy is larger, thus worse.
  • During the last 3 years, the maximum time in days below previous high water mark is 192 days, which is larger, thus worse than the value of 139 days from the benchmark.

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.'

Applying this definition to our asset in some examples:
  • Looking at the average days under water of 70 days in the last 5 years of Enhanced Permanent Portfolio Strategy, we see it is relatively larger, thus worse in comparison to the benchmark SPY (33 days)
  • During the last 3 years, the average days below previous high is 50 days, which is greater, thus worse than the value of 35 days from the benchmark.

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 Enhanced 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.