Phillip Brzenk

Director, Global Research & Design
S&P Dow Jones Indices

Phillip Brzenk is Director, Global Research & Design, at S&P Dow Jones Indices (S&P DJI). Phillip is responsible for conceptualization, research and design covering global strategy, factor based, alternative beta and thematic equity indices.

Prior to joining Global Research & Design, Phillip spent five years in the index management and production groups at S&P DJI, where he was involved in the index management of strategy and custom indices.

Phillip is a CFA Charterholder and a member of the New York Society of Security Analysts. He has a bachelor’s in Management with a concentration in Finance from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Author Archives: Phillip Brzenk

Equal-Weighting Versus Equal-Risk-Weighting Strategies

In a prior post, we reviewed the asset class risk contributions of a two-asset portfolio with varying weights. For an equal-weighted portfolio consisting of equities and bonds, we observed that nearly all contribution to total portfolio risk came from equities. To achieve equal risk contribution, the nominal weights in the portfolio would need to be Read more […]

Risk Contributions of Equity/Bond Asset Allocation Portfolios

In a prior post, we reviewed the risk and returns of portfolios with different equity and fixed income combinations. We saw that while equities outperformed fixed income during the period studied, fixed income had a higher risk-adjusted return ratio (annualized return divided by annualized risk). Due to the low return correlation between the two asset Read more […]

Asset Class Correlations Affect Portfolio Volatility and Return

In recent years, the term “risk parity” has become a catch-all phrase to describe strategies that attempt to allocate based on risk. The launch of the S&P Risk Parity Indices last week is a testament to the proliferation and the popularity of the style. As we noted in a prior blog, there is a lack Read more […]

Low Volatility Rate Response – Down-Market Analysis

In the second blog of this series, we saw that the S&P 500® Low Volatility Rate Response generally achieved similar levels of volatility reduction as the S&P 500 Low Volatility Index. In our paper Inside Low Volatility Indices (published in 2016), the low volatility index historically outperformed the S&P 500 during severe market downturns (Exhibit Read more […]

Low Volatility Rate Response – Interest Rate Changes and Relative Performance

In a prior post, we saw that during sharp rising interest rate periods, the S&P 500® Low Volatility Rate Response fared better than the S&P 500 Low Volatility Index, even though both indices generally underperformed the S&P 500. In this post, we examine if there is a relationship between the magnitude of interest rate changes Read more […]

Maintaining Risk Reduction While Reducing Interest Rate Risk

Previously, we highlighted that the S&P 500® Low Volatility Rate Response Index fared better than the S&P 500 Low Volatility Index when interest rates increased. The objective of low volatility portfolios is to deliver lower portfolio volatility than the broad market benchmark, leading to higher risk-adjusted returns over a long-term investment horizon. In this blog, Read more […]

Reducing Interest Rate Risk in a Low Volatility Strategy

In prior posts, we reviewed the impact of rising interest rates on the S&P 500® Low Volatility Index returns. We showed that the low volatility index had negative exposure to rising interest rates, and thus has historically underperformed the S&P 500 in periods when interest rates rose significantly. In this post, we look at the Read more […]

Performance Analysis of Liquidated Funds in Brazil – Part II

In this blog, we estimate the impact of survivorship bias on the performance of active equity funds in Brazil compared with the benchmark, the S&P Brazil BMI. We do so by replicating the outperformance report from the SPIVA® Year-End 2017 Latin America Scorecard, while removing all the liquidated and merged funds. We noted in a Read more […]

Introducing the Persistence Scorecard for Latin America

Following similar studies performed by S&P Dow Jones Indices on active funds in the U.S. and Australia, we introduce the Persistence Scorecard to the Latin America region. The two aforementioned studies have demonstrated that top-performing active funds have little chance of repeating that success in subsequent years. To determine if similar conclusions can be made Read more […]

Interest Rate Risk of Low Volatility Indices – Part II

In a previous blog, we performed preliminary exploration of rising interest rate exposure of the S&P 500® Low Volatility Index. In this blog, we continue the analysis to see if there is a relationship between the magnitude of interest rate change and magnitude of active return of the low volatility index relative to the S&P Read more […]