The Decline Continues

All fund risk and return metrics, ratings, and analytics were uploaded to MFO Premium Tuesday, 3 May, reflecting performance through April 2022.


After a brief respite in March, markets continued to sell off in April, especially tech equity and nearly all bonds.


The chart below once again depicts monthly and year-to-date (YTD) performance of the 11 State Street Sector ETFs, along with the S&P 500 ETF SPY. We are about 7 percentage points shy of bear market territory … or, two more days like 5 May.



If there is a silver lining, value funds appear to be holding-up much better than growth funds, as depicted in the table below for the 9 Morningstar Barometer ETFs. If you ignore April, value funds actually have some positive momentum the past 3, 6, 9 and 12 months.



No relief in bond land. Below find YTD performance for 10 bond funds, each representing highest AUM in their category. Dodge & Cox Income (DODIX) is down 9.3%, worse than during the Great Financial Crisis. That said, it remains an MFO Great Owl … one of best performers in category.



Other than a pure energy bet or market short, is anyone getting it right this year? Three equity funds David recommended a decade ago:


A call-out to a few other equity funds, which remain positive YTD:

  • Eagle Capital Growth (GRF),
  • Auer Focus (AUERX),
  • Cambria Value and Momentum ETF (VAMO),
  • WisdomTree US High Dividend (DHS),
  • Invesco S&P 500 High Dividend Low Volatility ETF (SPHD).


Just 9 out of 1200 bond mutual funds remain positive, excluding specialty income. And of those, only 3 have returned more than half-a-percent:

  • Fairholme Focus Income (FOCIX),
  • Catalyst Income and Multi-Strategy I (ACXIX),
  • Eaton Vance Short Duration Inflation-Protected Income I (EIRRX).


If there is a bright spot, perhaps it’s the alternative funds, particularly managed futures. AQR, which for years has delivered mediocre performance, boasts nine alternatives with double-digit returns, as depicted in YTD table below. Over the 12 months, 91% of AQR’s 23 funds have beaten their peers. Much better than 55%, its 5-year record.



For those of you enjoying MFO Charts, we’ve added a log-scale option, as well as ability to plot absolute instead of relative performance, which comes in handy with T-Bill/T-Note rates (see below). When rates are presented in this fashion, it’s hard to understand what all the fuss is about … kind of!



Lots more chart and quick analysis options planned in weeks ahead.


If you see anything amiss, let us know and we will respond soonest.