ETFReplay Portfolio For July

Includes: EFA, HYG, SHY, VNQ, VTI
by: Scott's Investments

Among the more popular portfolios on Scott's Investments has been the Portfolio. The strategy has been revised and improved for 2013 in order to make it simpler to follow. I previously detailed here and here how an investor can use to screen for best performing ETFs based on momentum and volatility. I select only the top 4 ETFs out of a static basket of ETFs and rebalance the portfolio monthly.

For 2013, the static basket of ETFs was reduced from 25 to 15. From this basket of 15, the top 4 are purchased each month. The portfolio will be rebalanced at the beginning of each month. When a holding drops out of the top 5 ETFs, it will be sold and replaced with the next highest ranked ETF. I added the top 5 requirement in order to further limit turnover. ETFs will be ranked on a combination of their 6 month returns, 3 month returns, and 3 month volatility (lower volatility receives a higher ranking).

In addition, ETFs must be ranked above the cash ETF SHY in order to be included in the portfolio, similar to the absolute momentum strategy I profiled here. This modification could help reduce drawdowns during periods of high volatility and/or negative market conditions (see 2008-2009).

The top 5 ranked ETFs as of 6/28/13 are below:

VTI Vanguard MSCI Total U.S. Stock Market
SHY Barclays Low Duration Treasury (2-yr)
HYG iShares iBoxx High-Yield Corp Bond (4-5yr)

Last month the strategy moved to 75% cash with the balance in VTI. For July there is no change to the allocation. Since cash is the second highest rated ETF, anything rated below it does not qualify. This is a defensive allocation, as a result of recent volatility and negative performance in a variety of equity, commodity and bond markets.

The strategy's performance since inception appears below, as does the comparative performance of the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSEARCA:SPY), a balanced allocation ETF, the iShares Growth Allocation (NYSEARCA:AOR), and the Permanent Portfolio (MUTF:PRPFX):

Disclosure: No positions

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