Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

March 26, 2015

As of the close, 3/26/15:

perf7 Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

Source: Yahoo! Finance

See www.powershares.com, www.ftportfolios.com, and www.arrowshares.com for more information.

The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.  Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this post.  It is for the general information of readers of this blog.  This post does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this post, investors should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.  Dorsey Wright & Associates is the index provider for the above ETFs.

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RS Chart of The Day

March 26, 2015

SPYVSGCC zpselvix2lz RS Chart of The Day

Point and Figure RS Charts are calculated by dividing one security by another and plotting the ratio on a PnF chart.  When the ratio is rising, it is plotted in a column of X’s and reflects the numerator outperforming the denominator.  Likewise, when the relative strength ratio is declining, it is plotted in a column of O’s and reflects the outperformance of the denominator.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this document.  It is for the general information of clients of Dorsey, Wright & Associates, LLC (“Dorsey, Wright & Associates”).  This document does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this document, clients should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.

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RS Chart of The Day

March 25, 2015

SPYVSIYR2 zps5td7ose7 RS Chart of The Day

Point and Figure RS Charts are calculated by dividing one security by another and plotting the ratio on a PnF chart.  When the ratio is rising, it is plotted in a column of X’s and reflects the numerator outperforming the denominator.  Likewise, when the relative strength ratio is declining, it is plotted in a column of O’s and reflects the outperformance of the denominator.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this document.  It is for the general information of clients of Dorsey, Wright & Associates, LLC (“Dorsey, Wright & Associates”).  This document does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this document, clients should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.

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RS Chart of The day

March 24, 2015

SPYVSAGG zpsvfnoenzs RS Chart of The day

Point and Figure RS Charts are calculated by dividing one security by another and plotting the ratio on a PnF chart.  When the ratio is rising, it is plotted in a column of X’s and reflects the numerator outperforming the denominator.  Likewise, when the relative strength ratio is declining, it is plotted in a column of O’s and reflects the outperformance of the denominator.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this document.  It is for the general information of clients of Dorsey, Wright & Associates, LLC (“Dorsey, Wright & Associates”).  This document does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this document, clients should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.

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Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

March 20, 2015

As of the close, 3/20/15:

perf6 Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

Source: Yahoo! Finance

See www.powershares.com, www.ftportfolios.com, and www.arrowshares.com for more information.

The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.  Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this post.  It is for the general information of readers of this blog.  This post does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this post, investors should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.  Dorsey Wright & Associates is the index provider for the above ETFs.

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RS Chart of The Day

March 20, 2015

spyvsefa zps3mcwfpjh RS Chart of The Day

Point and Figure RS Charts are calculated by dividing one security by another and plotting the ratio on a PnF chart.  When the ratio is rising, it is plotted in a column of X’s and reflects the numerator outperforming the denominator.  Likewise, when the relative strength ratio is declining, it is plotted in a column of O’s and reflects the outperformance of the denominator.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this document.  It is for the general information of clients of Dorsey, Wright & Associates, LLC (“Dorsey, Wright & Associates”).  This document does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this document, clients should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.

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Sector Performance

March 20, 2015

The chart below shows performance of US sectors over the trailing 12, 6, and 1 month(s).  Performance updated through 3/19/15.

sector1 Sector Performance

The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.  Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.    Source: iShares

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Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

March 19, 2015

As of the close, 3/19/15:

perf 03.19.15 Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

Source: Yahoo! Finance

See www.powershares.com, www.ftportfolios.com, and www.arrowshares.com for more information.

The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.  Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this post.  It is for the general information of readers of this blog.  This post does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this post, investors should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.  Dorsey Wright & Associates is the index provider for the above ETFs.

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It’s a Big World

March 19, 2015

It’s a big world…why limit your equity exposure just to the U.S.?

Among the relative strength-based strategies that we are most proud of here at Dorsey Wright is our Systematic RS International portfolio.  This is a separately managed account strategy that we started managing on 3/31/2006.  Over the last nearly 9 years, this portfolio of ADRs has outperformed the MSCI EAFE Index by 5.97% annually on a net basis.  Over the last 3 and 5 years  the margin of outperformance is even larger.

intl Its a Big World

As of 2/28/2015

The idea with this strategy is to take a broad universe of ADRs and allow our relative strength model to determine which 30-40 to own.  As shown in the table below, a number of our holdings have been in the model for years:

intl3 Its a Big World

The actual purchase date of the stocks in client portfolios was typically the next trading day from the date shown in the “Added” column.  A list of all historical holdings is available upon request.

One of the key benefits of relative strength models is that they allow an investor to stay with the winners.  Without relying on a strict relative strength rank sell discipline, investors often are too quick to pull the trigger on winning stocks.  This type of strategy also minimizes the need for an in-depth understanding of the fundamentals of these international companies.  We can hardly pronounce most of their names, let alone understand the dynamics of their businesses!  However, relative strength can rank them just the same.  There also tends to be a lot of dispersion of returns in this universe of ADRs.  More dispersion is typically a positive thing for relative strength strategies.

To learn more about this strategy and the platforms where it is available, please call or e-mail Andy at 626-535-0630, andy@dorseywright.com.

The performance represented in this brochure is based on monthly performance of the Systematic Relative Strength International Model. Net performance shown is total return net of management fees for all Dorsey, Wright & Associates managed accounts, managed for each complete quarter for each objective, regardless of levels of fixed income and cash in each account. The advisory fees are described in Part II of the adviser’s Form ADV. The starting values on 3/31/2006 are assigned an arbitrary value of 100 and statement portfolios are revalued on a trade date basis on the last day of each quarter. All returns since inception of actual Accounts are compared against the MSCI EAFE Total Return Index. The MSCI EAFE Total Return Index is a stock market index that is designed to measure the equity market performance of developed markets outside of the United States and Canada and is maintained by MSCI Barra. A list of all holdings over the past 12 months is available upon request. The performance information is based on data supplied by the Manager or from statistical services, reports, or other sources which the Manager believes are reliable.  There are risks inherent in international investments, which may make such investments unsuitable for certain clients. These include, for example, economic, political, currency exchange, rate fluctuations, and limited availability of information on international securities.  Past performance does not guarantee future results. In all securities trading, there is a potential for loss as well as profit. It should not be assumed that recommendations made in the future will be profitable or will equal the performance as shown. Investors should have long-term financial objectives when working with Dorsey, Wright & Associates.

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DWA ETFs

March 19, 2015

Shown below are Point & Figure charts of the 17 ETFs for which Dorsey Wright & Associates is the index provider (as of 3/18/2015):

pdp2 DWA ETFs

dwas2 DWA ETFs

dwaq2 DWA ETFs

piz2 DWA ETFs

pie2 DWA ETFs

pez2 DWA ETFs

pfi2 DWA ETFs

industrials2 DWA ETFs

psl2 DWA ETFs

ptf2 DWA ETFs

pth2 DWA ETFs

pui2 DWA ETFs

pxi2 DWA ETFs

pyz2 DWA ETFs

fv2 DWA ETFs

ifv3 DWA ETFs

dwat2 DWA ETFs

The information found on Dorsey, Wright & Associates’ Web Pages has been prepared without regard to any particular investor’s investment objectives, financial situation, and needs. Accordingly, investors should not act on any recommendation (express or implied) or information in this report without obtaining specific advice from their financial advisors and should not rely on information herein as the primary basis for their investment decisions. Information contained herein is based on data obtained from recognized statistical services, issuer reports or communications, or other sources, believed to be reliable. However, such information has not been verified by Dorsey, Wright and Associates, LLC (DWA) or the information provider and DWA and the information providers make no representations or warranties or take any responsibility as to the accuracy or completeness of any recommendation or information contained herein.

Neither the information nor any opinion expressed shall constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation or an offer to buy any securities or commodities mentioned herein. This report or chart does not purport to be a complete description of the securities or commodities, market or developments to which reference is made. There may be instances when fundamental, technical, and quantitative opinions may not be in concert.

Each investor should carefully consider the investment objectives, risks and expenses of any Exchange-Traded Fund (“ETF”) prior to investing. Before investing in an ETF investors should obtain and carefully read the relevant prospectus and documents the issuer has filed with the SEC.  To obtain more complete information about the product the documents are publicly available for free via EDGAR on the SEC website (http://www.sec.gov).

PDP: Prior to the fund inception date (3/1/07), chart is created using extrapolated index data.

DWAS: Prior to the fund inception date (7/19/2012), the chart is created from extrapolated index data.

DWAQ:  Prior to fund inception date (4/30/03), chart is created using extrapolated index data (DYO), and the fund tracked this index through 2/18/14. Effective 2/19/14, the fund changed the index that it tracks to DWA NASDAQ Technical Leaders Index (TLNASDAQ)

PIZ: Prior to the fund inception date (12/28/2007), chart is created using extrapolated index data.Prior to the fund inception date (12/28/2007), chart is created using extrapolated index data.

PEZ: Prior to fund inception date (10/12/06), chart is created using extrapolated index data (EZZK), and the fund tracked this index through 2/18/14. Effective 2/19/14, the fund changed the index that it tracks to DWA Consumer Cyclicals Technical Leaders Index (TLCONCYC)

PFI: Prior to fund inception date (10/12/06), chart is created using extrapolated index data (EZFK), and the fund tracked this index through 2/18/14. Effective 2/19/14, the fund changed the index that it tracks to DWA Financial Technical Leaders Index (TLFINANCE)

PRN: Prior to fund inception date (10/12/06), chart is created using extrapolated index data (EZLK), and the fund tracked this index through 2/18/14. Effective 2/19/14, the fund changed the index that it tracks to DWA Industrials Technical Leaders Index (TLINDUST)

PSL: Prior to fund inception date (10/12/06), chart is created using extrapolated index data (EZSK), and the fund tracked this index through 2/18/14. Effective 2/19/14, the fund changed the index that it tracks to DWA Consumer Staples Technical Leaders Index (TLCONSTA)

PTF: Prior to the fund inception date (10/12/2006), chart is created using extrapolated index data. and the fund tracked this index through 2/18/14. Effective 2/19/14, the fund changed the index that it tracks to DWA Technology Technical Leaders Index (TLTECH)

PTH: Prior to fund inception date (10/12/06), chart is created using extrapolated index data (EZXK), and the fund tracked this index through 2/18/14. Effective 2/19/14, the fund changed the index that it tracks to DWA Healthcare Technical Leaders Index (TLHEALTH)

PUI: Prior to fund inception date (10/25/05), chart is created using extrapolated index data (DWU), and the fund tracked this index through 2/18/14. Effective 2/19/14, the fund changed the index that it tracks to DWA Utilities Technical Leaders Index (TLUTIL)

PXI: Prior to fund inception date (10/12/06), chart is created using extrapolated index data (EZKK), and the fund tracked this index through 2/18/14. Effective 2/19/14, the fund changed the index that it tracks to DWA Energy Technical Leaders Index (TLENERGY)

PYZ: Prior to fund inception date (10/12/06), chart is created using extrapolated index data (EZBK), and the fund tracked this index through 2/18/14. Effective 2/19/14, the fund changed the index that it tracks to DWA Basic Materials Technical Leaders Index (TLBASMAT)

FV: Prior to the fund inception date (3/6/2014), chart is created using extrapolated index data (FTRUST5)

IFV: Prior to the fund inception date (7/23/2014), chart is created using extrapolated index data.

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RS Chart of The Day

March 19, 2015

spy eem RS Chart of The Day

Point and Figure RS Charts are calculated by dividing one security by another and plotting the ratio on a PnF chart.  When the ratio is rising, it is plotted in a column of X’s and reflects the numerator outperforming the denominator.  Likewise, when the relative strength ratio is declining, it is plotted in a column of O’s and reflects the outperformance of the denominator.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this document.  It is for the general information of clients of Dorsey, Wright & Associates, LLC (“Dorsey, Wright & Associates”).  This document does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this document, clients should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.

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Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

March 18, 2015

As of the close, 3/18/15:

perf5 Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

Source: Yahoo! Finance

See www.powershares.com, www.ftportfolios.com, and www.arrowshares.com for more information.

The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.  Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this post.  It is for the general information of readers of this blog.  This post does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this post, investors should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.  Dorsey Wright & Associates is the index provider for the above ETFs.

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RS Chart of The Day

March 18, 2015

spygcc zpstgfgsbtx RS Chart of The Day

Point and Figure RS Charts are calculated by dividing one security by another and plotting the ratio on a PnF chart.  When the ratio is rising, it is plotted in a column of X’s and reflects the numerator outperforming the denominator.  Likewise, when the relative strength ratio is declining, it is plotted in a column of O’s and reflects the outperformance of the denominator.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this document.  It is for the general information of clients of Dorsey, Wright & Associates, LLC (“Dorsey, Wright & Associates”).  This document does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this document, clients should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.

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High RS Diffusion Index

March 18, 2015

The chart below measures the percentage of high relative strength stocks that are trading above their 50-day moving average (universe of mid and large cap stocks.)  As of 3/17/15.

diffusion2 High RS Diffusion Index

The 10-day moving average of this indicator is 75% and the one-day reading is 82%.

This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.   Investors cannot invest directly in an index. Indexes have no fees. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss. 

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RS Chart of The Day

March 17, 2015

spyvsiyr zpslv2vaf7i RS Chart of The Day

Point and Figure RS Charts are calculated by dividing one security by another and plotting the ratio on a PnF chart.  When the ratio is rising, it is plotted in a column of X’s and reflects the numerator outperforming the denominator.  Likewise, when the relative strength ratio is declining, it is plotted in a column of O’s and reflects the outperformance of the denominator.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this document.  It is for the general information of clients of Dorsey, Wright & Associates, LLC (“Dorsey, Wright & Associates”).  This document does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this document, clients should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.

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Market Timing vs. Global Tactical Allocation

March 17, 2015

The Irrelevant Investor takes a look back at rolling 6 and 10-year returns for the U.S. stock market:

6 Market Timing vs. Global Tactical Allocation

10 Market Timing vs. Global Tactical Allocation

Where Do Stocks Go From Here?

After six years of virtually uninterrupted gains, people are wondering where we go from here.

Stocks are up more than 200% over the last six years which is the best six-year run since the tech bubble. Looking at the chart, we see that we are well above the 85% historical average. Once stocks have achieved this level of success, returns going forward have declined.

There have been 54 prior periods where six year returns were greater than 200%. The average return over the next three years was 9% (median 20%) compared with an average historical three-year return of 38%. Furthermore, following these strong runs, we have seen negative three-year returns 35% of the time compared with the 17% negative three-year returns that we have seen historically. So, three-year returns following such a strong run have been one quarter of the average three-year return with negative returns occurring twice as often as we have seen historically.

While there might be reason to be cautious looking back over the last six years, when we take a step back the picture starts to change. Over the last ten years, stocks have gained 115% which is just 60% of the historical average ten-year return of 192%.

This type of observation can lead an investor to believe that a choice needs to be made.  Given the run that we have had over the past 6 years, should we preemptively reduce equity exposure?  Or, should we view the future through the lens of having a sub-par decade and therefore stay exposed to equities with the expectation that they may continue to rise from here?

The advantage of using a global tactical asset allocation strategy for a healthy portion of a client’s allocation is that they can let relative strength make this decision for them rather than engage in the fruitless game of forecasting.  The stress of trying to make the right call is taken off the table.  Relative strength may not (and, in fact, will not) always be right.  However, it does allow an investor to participate in long-term trends and when it is wrong, it will not stay wrong.

Market timing is very different than global tactical allocation.  The former relies heavily on the luck of getting calls right and entails a large risk of devastating investment results.  The latter is pragmatic and disciplined and, we believe, likely to result in favorable investment results over time.

The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.

HT: Abnormal Returns

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Relative Strength Spread

March 17, 2015

The chart below is the spread between the relative strength leaders and relative strength laggards (universe of mid and large cap stocks).  When the chart is rising, relative strength leaders are performing better than relative strength laggards.    As of 3/16/15:

spread1 Relative Strength Spread

This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.   Investors cannot invest directly in an index. Indexes have no fees. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss. 

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Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

March 16, 2015

As of the close, 3/16/15:

perf4 Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

Source: Yahoo! Finance

See www.powershares.com, www.ftportfolios.com, and www.arrowshares.com for more information.

The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.  Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this post.  It is for the general information of readers of this blog.  This post does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this post, investors should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.  Dorsey Wright & Associates is the index provider for the above ETFs.

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Smart Beta: To Hold or to Trade?

March 16, 2015

As the Smart Beta movement marches on, one of the questions that frequently comes up from advisors is how Smart Beta strategies fit in an asset allocation.  Should they be viewed as a strategic (i.e. buy and hold) portion of an allocation, or should they be viewed as a tactical (i.e. shorter-term) piece?  It has always been my sense that it is best to mix Smart Beta strategies, like value, low volatility, and momentum, in a portfolio and hold them as part of a core piece of a client’s portfolio.  That position probably comes from speaking with countless advisors who have managed to completely mistime their exposure to these strategies.  Some would argue that there is no need to buy and hold various Smart Beta strategies if one has an effective method of rotating among them.  Fair point.  In an effort to put some numbers behind these two options, consider the following study.

I decided to take two of the best-known Smart Beta ETFs, The PowerShares FTSE RAFI US 1000 ETF (PRF) and the PowerShares DWA Momentum ETF (PDP) and run a simple test to see if rotating between PRF and PDP worked better than buying and holding the two in equal portions.  PDP began trading on March 1, 2007 and PRF began trading on December 20, 2005—so these are ETFs that have been around for quite a while now.  I ran two portfolios from September 30, 2007 through February 28, 2015.  The first portfolio simply bought 50% PDP and 50% PRF….nothing more.  The second portfolio rotated between PDP and PRF (either completely in one or the other).  The way that I determined if the portfolio should own PDP or PRF was to see which of the two had the best trailing 6 month performance.  This was evaluated monthly.  On September 30, 2007, PDP was bought because it had better trailing six month performance than PRF.  I moved on  to the next month and if PDP still had better trailing 6 month performance than PRF I remained 100% invested in PDP.  If, on the other hand, PRF had better trailing 6 month performance, I switched to PRF.  This was repeated monthly throughout the test period.

The results are shown below:

SB Switching Smart Beta: To Hold or to Trade?

Source: Yahoo! Finance.  9/30/07 – 2/28/15.  Returns are inclusive of dividends, but do not include transaction costs.

In this study, the clear winner is buying and holding equal portions of PDP and PRF.  Not switching back and forth.  Just sitting tight and letting these Smart Beta ETFs do their thing.  Switching between the two based on trailing 6 month returns resulted in lower returns and higher standard deviation.  It also entailed making the 14 switches along the way.  Buying 50% of PDP and 50% of PRF resulted in better performance than the S&P 500 (SPY), but switching also lagged the broad market.  It is entirely possible that using some other methodology for determining which of the two to own could work better….and may even outperform the simple approach of buying equal portions of each.  However, this should at least give someone pause before embarking on a Smart Beta trading strategy.

Part of the reason that mixing Momentum and Value works so well is that they tend to outperform at different times.  During the period of this study, the correlation of excess returns between PDP and PRF was -0.17.  If you buy and hold the two, you receive the correlation benefits.  If you switch between the two, you lose the correlation benefits.  The switching mechanism that I used for this study (trailing 6 month returns), is a trend following approach—which means that you miss out on the correlation benefits at the turns.

This all may seem strange coming from a shop like Dorsey Wright, known for Tactical Asset Allocation strategies.  After all, aren’t we all about rotating to what is strong?  Here is the key point: There is a difference between rotating among a broad number of securities with correlations all over the map and rotating among a small number of Smart Beta strategies which have negatively correlated excess returns.  Rotating among the former can be quite profitable over time, while using a trend following approach to rotate among the latter may not.

Sometimes, the answer to how to achieve success in the markets is to simplify rather than to complicate.  Smart Beta may just be one of those times where simplification (i.e. buying and holding equal portions of different winning Smart Beta factors) makes the most sense.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Some performance information presented is the result of back-tested performance.  Back-tested performance is hypothetical (it does not reflect trading in actual accounts) and is provided for informational purposes to illustrate the effects of this strategy during a specific period.  Back-tested performance results have certain limitations.  Such results do not represent the impact of material economic and market factors might have on an investment advisor’s decision making process if the advisor were actually managing client money.  Back-testing performance also differs from actual performance because it is achieved through retroactive application of a model investment methodology designed with the benefit of hindsight.

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Weekly RS Recap

March 16, 2015

The table below shows the performance of a universe of mid and large cap U.S. equities, broken down by relative strength decile and quartile and then compared to the universe return.  Those at the top of the ranks are those stocks which have the best intermediate-term relative strength.  Relative strength strategies buy securities that have strong intermediate-term relative strength and hold them as long as they remain strong.

Last week’s performance (3/9/15 – 3/13/15) is as follows:

ranks1 Weekly RS Recap

This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.  Past performance is not indicative of future results. Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss. 

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RS Chart of The Day

March 16, 2015

SPYVSAGG zpsmt21hrqo RS Chart of The Day

Point and Figure RS Charts are calculated by dividing one security by another and plotting the ratio on a PnF chart.  When the ratio is rising, it is plotted in a column of X’s and reflects the numerator outperforming the denominator.  Likewise, when the relative strength ratio is declining, it is plotted in a column of O’s and reflects the outperformance of the denominator.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this document.  It is for the general information of clients of Dorsey, Wright & Associates, LLC (“Dorsey, Wright & Associates”).  This document does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this document, clients should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.

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Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

March 13, 2015

As of the close, 3/13/15:

perf3 Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

Source: Yahoo! Finance

See www.powershares.com, www.ftportfolios.com, and www.arrowshares.com for more information.

The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.  Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this post.  It is for the general information of readers of this blog.  This post does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this post, investors should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.  Dorsey Wright & Associates is the index provider for the above ETFs.

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Sector Performance

March 13, 2015

The chart below shows performance of US sectors over the trailing 12, 6, and 1 month(s).  Performance updated through 3/12/15.

sector Sector Performance

The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.  Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.    Source: iShares

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RS Chart of The Day

March 13, 2015

SPYVSEEM zpsltum4lws RS Chart of The Day

Point and Figure RS Charts are calculated by dividing one security by another and plotting the ratio on a PnF chart.  When the ratio is rising, it is plotted in a column of X’s and reflects the numerator outperforming the denominator.  Likewise, when the relative strength ratio is declining, it is plotted in a column of O’s and reflects the outperformance of the denominator.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  This example is presented for illustrative purposes only and does not represent a past recommendation.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this document.  It is for the general information of clients of Dorsey, Wright & Associates, LLC (“Dorsey, Wright & Associates”).  This document does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this document, clients should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.

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Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

March 12, 2015

As of the close, 3/12/15:

perf2 Daily DWA Indexes Wrap

Source: Yahoo! Finance

See www.powershares.com, www.ftportfolios.com, and www.arrowshares.com for more information.

The performance above is based on pure price returns, not inclusive of dividends or all transaction costs.  Past performance is not indicative of future results.  Potential for profits is accompanied by possibility of loss.  The relative strength strategy is NOT a guarantee.  There may be times where all investments and strategies are unfavorable and depreciate in value.  Nothing contained herein should be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security.  This post does not attempt to examine all the facts and circumstances which may be relevant to any product or security mentioned herein.  We are not soliciting any action based on this post.  It is for the general information of readers of this blog.  This post does not constitute a personal recommendation or take into account the particular investment objectives, financial situations, or needs of individual clients.  Before acting on any analysis, advice or recommendation in this post, investors should consider whether the security or strategy in question is suitable for their particular circumstances and, if necessary, seek professional advice.  Dorsey Wright & Associates is the index provider for the above ETFs.

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