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Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers is an SEC-registered investment adviser firm. The information presented is for educational purposes only and intended for a broad audience. The information does not intend to make an offer or solicitation to sell or purchase any specific securities, investments, or investment strategies. Investments involve risk and are not guaranteed. Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers reasonably believes that this marketing does not include any false or misleading statements or omissions of facts regarding services, investment, or client experience. Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers has a reasonable belief that the content will not cause an untrue or misleading implication regarding the adviser’s services, investments, or client experiences. Please refer to the firm’s ADV Part 2A for material risks disclosures.

Past performance of specific investment advice should not be relied upon without knowledge of certain circumstances of market events, the nature and timing of the investments, and relevant constraints of the investment. Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers has presented information in a fair and balanced manner.

Copyright (c) 2023 Clearnomics, Inc. and Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers, LTD. All rights reserved. The information contained herein has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but is not necessarily complete and its accuracy cannot be guaranteed. No representation or warranty, express or implied, is made as to the fairness, accuracy, completeness, or correctness of the information and opinions contained herein. The views and the other information provided are subject to change without notice. All reports posted on or via www.clearnomics.com or any affiliated websites, applications, or services are issued without regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation, or particular needs of any specific recipient and are not to be construed as a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any securities or related financial instruments. Past performance is not necessarily a guide to future results. Company fundamentals and earnings may be mentioned occasionally, but should not be construed as a recommendation to buy, sell, or hold the company's stock. Predictions, forecasts, and estimates for any and all markets should not be construed as recommendations to buy, sell, or hold any security--including mutual funds, futures contracts, and exchange traded funds, or any similar instruments. The text, images, and other materials contained or displayed in this report are proprietary to Clearnomics, Inc. and constitute valuable intellectual property. All unauthorized reproduction or other use of material from Clearnomics, Inc. shall be deemed willful infringement(s) of this copyright and other proprietary and intellectual property rights, including but not limited to, rights of privacy. Clearnomics, Inc. expressly reserves all rights in connection with its intellectual property, including without limitation the right to block the transfer of its products and services and/or to track usage thereof, through electronic tracking technology, and all other lawful means, now known or hereafter devised. Clearnomics, Inc. reserves the right, without further notice, to pursue to the fullest extent allowed by the law any and all criminal and civil remedies for the violation of its rights.

  • Writer's pictureSummit Puri

It’s a Risky Business, or is it?

When you think about risk, do you immediately think of the probability that some unfavorable outcome will occur? Most of us do. However, risk is defined as the chance/probability that the result will differ from the expectations. So, inherently, risk can be positive or negative. Sounds counterintuitive, right?  I believe the best way to understand this concept is to look at it mathematically and graphically.

 

Risk as Standard Deviation

You’ve probably seen risk defined as ‘beta’ or standard deviation or any other slew of metrics, but in today’s discussion, we’ll focus on standard deviation.  If you want a refresher on other risk metrics at a high level, read this previously posted article I wrote, Investing Metrics, Key Risk Metrics (whitakerwealth.com). 

 

Standard deviation, taking us all back to our grade school days, measures the volatility or dispersion from the mean. Simply put, standard deviation measures the probability that a result/outcome will land within n-standard deviations of the mean. In this example, the mean is the expected outcome or expected return for the investment/security.

 

Let’s take a look at this in graphically

Source: scribbr.com


‘M’ here is the mean, and the dispersion from the mean is shown as standard deviations. The standard deviation values are important. Imagine that you have an investment that your purchase price was $50/share and this purchase price (hypothetically, of course) was the same as the mean over the specified timeframe.  

 

This means that:

  • Your investment should have a return 68% (1 SD) of the time between $40-60

  • Your investment should have a return 95% (2 SD) of the time between $30-70

  • Your investment should have a return 99% (3 SD) of the time between $20-80

 

Or rephrased:

  • Your investment should have a return >$60 or <$40, 32% (1-0.68) of the time

  • Your investment should have a return >$70 or <$30, 5% (1-0.95) of the time

  • Your investment should have a return >$80 or <$20, 1% (1-0.99) of the time

 

So, the question remains: Is this risky calculation/measurement actually risky?  Standard deviation measures the probability of upside and downside risk, but when I think of risk, I only consider the loss possibility.

 

Great, so let’s revisit with only the downside risk.

 

Downside Risk

Only looking at downside risk:

  • Your investment could have a return 34% (1 SD) of the time between $40-50

  • Your investment could have a return 2.5% (2 SD) of the time between $30-50

  • Your investment could have a return 0.5% (3 SD) of the time between $20-50

 

Or rephrased:

  • Your investment could have a return <$50, 34% of the time

  • Your investment could have a return <$30, 2.5% of the time

  • Your investment could have a return <$20, 0.5% of the time

 

Did you notice I changed should, to could? – This is called framing; we’ll discuss that in a future post!

 

Sortino Ratio

Well, that’s a bit easier to grasp and aligns with the way I see risk in the market. So, how can I understand the standard deviation of my portfolio and measure it against the market? There is a metric called the Sortino ratio. This ratio is a risk-adjusted return metric focused on downside deviation and risk. If you’re a risk-averse investor, consider discussing this ratio with your advisor. More importantly, make sure you discuss your risk tolerance, time horizon, and goals.

 

Our team of financial advisors at Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers is well-versed in metrics and how to align your goals with results. Schedule time with our team to discuss and if you have any topics you’d like for me to address, please submit them here.

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Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers is an SEC-registered investment adviser firm. The information presented is for educational purposes only and intended for a broad audience. The information does not intend to make an offer or solicitation to sell or purchase any specific securities, investments, or investment strategies. Investments involve risk and are not guaranteed. Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers reasonably believes that this marketing does not include any false or misleading statements or omissions of facts regarding services, investment, or client experience. Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers has a reasonable belief that the content will not cause an untrue or misleading implication regarding the adviser’s services, investments, or client experiences. Please refer to the firm’s ADV Part 2A for material risks disclosures.

Past performance of specific investment advice should not be relied upon without knowledge of certain circumstances of market events, the nature and timing of the investments, and relevant constraints of the investment. Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers has presented information in a fair and balanced manner.

Copyright (c) 2023 Clearnomics, Inc. and Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers, LTD. All rights reserved. The information contained herein has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but is not necessarily complete and its accuracy cannot be guaranteed. No representation or warranty, express or implied, is made as to the fairness, accuracy, completeness, or correctness of the information and opinions contained herein. The views and the other information provided are subject to change without notice. All reports posted on or via www.clearnomics.com or any affiliated websites, applications, or services are issued without regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation, or particular needs of any specific recipient and are not to be construed as a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any securities or related financial instruments. Past performance is not necessarily a guide to future results. Company fundamentals and earnings may be mentioned occasionally, but should not be construed as a recommendation to buy, sell, or hold the company's stock. Predictions, forecasts, and estimates for any and all markets should not be construed as recommendations to buy, sell, or hold any security--including mutual funds, futures contracts, and exchange traded funds, or any similar instruments. The text, images, and other materials contained or displayed in this report are proprietary to Clearnomics, Inc. and constitute valuable intellectual property. All unauthorized reproduction or other use of material from Clearnomics, Inc. shall be deemed willful infringement(s) of this copyright and other proprietary and intellectual property rights, including but not limited to, rights of privacy. Clearnomics, Inc. expressly reserves all rights in connection with its intellectual property, including without limitation the right to block the transfer of its products and services and/or to track usage thereof, through electronic tracking technology, and all other lawful means, now known or hereafter devised. Clearnomics, Inc. reserves the right, without further notice, to pursue to the fullest extent allowed by the law any and all criminal and civil remedies for the violation of its rights.

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