Category Archives: Equities

Sea Change at the Fed

Today’s Fed announcement keeping the Fed funds target range at 2.25% to 2.5% was more than simply leaving rates unchanged for the moment. Behind the headlines are changes in their expectations for inflation and the economy and adjustments in their operating procedures: The FOMC will be patient as it determines what future adjustments to the Read more […]

Reviewing S&P Pure Style Indices from a Sector Perspective

The S&P Pure Style Indices select and weight securities based on their style scores, unlike the traditional S&P Style Indices. In our previous blog post, we demonstrated that differences in index construction play a major role in the performance differential between the S&P Style Indices and the S&P Pure Style Indices. We estimated that the Read more […]

S&P Pure Style Indices Versus S&P Style Indices: The Impact of Security Selection and Weighting on Excess Returns

The S&P Style Indices and the S&P Pure Style Indices have distinct long-term performance differences and risk/return characteristics. We highlighted those in a prior blog where we reviewed the two approaches to constructing traditional style and pure style indices. What are the drivers of the return differentials between pure style and style? We know that Read more […]

An Unfair Fight: Value Managers Were Crushed

When I was in the U.S. Army, the doctrine for an attack specified a desired ratio of at least three of us versus every one of them. This would help to ensure an unfair fight. When your life is on the line, you want the odds in your favor. Why should that desire to tilt Read more […]

Communication Services Is Getting Louder

Since the sector shakeup on Sep. 24, 2018,  the S&P 500 fell 19.5% through the close of Dec. 24, 2018 then rebounded 12.2% by the close of  Jan. 23, 2019 for a loss of 9.6% in the full period.  The annualized volatility of 22.8% in the past 82 days has been the highest since the 82 Read more […]

A Little Bit of Low Vol Can Go a Long Way

The fourth quarter of 2018 was pretty turbulent for global equities.  Volatility and correlations rose, the majority of the S&P Global BMI’s 48 country constituents declined by double digits, recent darlings among factor strategies (momentum and growth) lagged, and the S&P 500’s 13.52% quarterly plunge left the benchmark with its first calendar-year loss in a Read more […]

2018 Retirement Funding Update for DC Account Holders

2018 produced negative absolute returns across a number of asset classes, particularly international stocks. A broad benchmark of stocks traded outside of the U.S., the S&P Global ex-U.S. BMI (US Dollar) Gross Total Return Index, lost 14.18% of its value. Nevertheless, many investments kept pace with the change in cost of securing future retirement income, Read more […]

Latin America Scorecard: Q4 2018

It is that time of year when we look back at the memorable moments that made 2018 so special. In our case, we will look at the Latin American markets to see their development and performance. This past year was particularly exhilarating and terrifying at the same time, similar to the feeling one gets when Read more […]

Pure Style Indices: A Finer Tool With Higher Style Focus

Style investing as an investment approach has long been utilized by market participants to group securities based on their common characteristics and risk/return drivers. Those common characteristics, in turn, help investors make strategic and tactical asset allocation decisions. The first-generation S&P U.S. Style Indices serve as effective underlying tools for market participants seeking a passive Read more […]

Looking at Sectors With a Style Lens

We’ve previously observed that we can view the world through both a factor and a sector lens, but what about overlaying sectors and style? This is indeed possible, as sectors can serve as implementation vehicles to achieve a particular view on style. Using value and growth scores that are reset annually for every constituent within Read more […]