Category Archives: Factors

Battle of Factors: Low Volatility versus High Beta

2020 has surprised us all with a number of firsts. Not only did we witness wild swings in the market from one quarter to the next, we also saw an unusual performance of commonly followed factors. While this blog will not attempt to predict factor performance, it will address recent factor behavior and put this Read more […]

Is ESG a Factor? The S&P 500 ESG Index’s Steady Outperformance

Since launching the S&P ESG Index Series, we have been continuously asked the same question: Can environmental, social, and governance (ESG) be considered a factor that outperforms? In short, since its launch in January 2019, the S&P 500® ESG Index has outperformed (see Exhibit 1). We further analyzed the performance characteristics of the S&P 500 Read more […]

Looking Under the Hood of S&P 500 Information Technology Performance

Has the IT sector done well because of the quality factor, or is it the other way round? S&P DJI’s Anu Ganti takes a closer look at the relationship between sectors and factors to explore what’s driving IT’s climb over the past 12 months. Read the blog: https://www.indexologyblog.com/2020/05/27/symbiotic-sentiments/ 

S&P Pure Growth Indices – Attributes and Performance Drivers

The S&P 500® has had a wild ride in 2020. The index hit an all-time high in February, then dropped 33.8% to the bottom in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and then rallied 32.6% by May 22. During this turbulent time, the S&P 500 Pure Growth, while declining along with markets, ultimately outperformed its Read more […]

Big Sector Shifts in Low Volatility Composition

In March, COVID-19 inspired volatility roiled markets across the globe. Similarly, the volatility of the S&P/TSX Composite also jumped. The increase, however, was not balanced across all sectors. We see this manifested in the most recent rebalance for the S&P/TSX Composite Low Volatility Index. Effective after the close of trading April 24, 2020, Exhibit 1 Read more […]

A Changed World

The world looks much different than it did three months ago. Since then equities hit their all-time peak, entered a bear market, exited a bear market, and currently sit 15% off peak with sustained higher volatility levels. The latest rebalance for the S&P 500 Low Volatility Index®, effective after the close of trading today, rotated Read more […]

Comparing Bottom-Up versus Top-Down Multi-Factor Construction

The S&P 500® Quality, Value & Momentum Multi-Factor Index is designed to measure the performance of stocks having the highest combination of quality, value, and momentum (QVM). It takes a “bottom-up” approach of scoring each stock on its individual factor attributes and selecting stocks that jointly score highest across all the factors [1]. In light Read more […]

Factors and Factor Indices

There is a subtle but important distinction between factors and factor indices.  “Factor” denotes an attribute with which long-term excess returns are thought to be associated.  Fama and French, for instance, famously found that small size and cheap valuation were factors in this sense.  A number of other variables – prominently including momentum, low volatility, Read more […]

Exploring Low Volatility over the Long-Term in India

How does the low volatility factor respond to periods of crisis and do the results tend to hold over the long term in India? S&P DJI’s Koel Ghosh takes a closer look at the low volatility anomaly in India. Read more here: https://www.indexologyblog.com/2020/03/24/low-volatility-strategies-in-times-of-high-volatility/.

S&P 500 Dividend Futures: Divining Time To Recovery

In 2019, the S&P 500® companies in aggregate paid a record $485 billion in dividends.  This year, the figure could be closer to $415 billion, and it could be another seven years before they recover to 2019 levels, according to futures prices.  Dividend futures, that is. Index futures based on the level of the S&P Read more […]