There are close to 1,600 U.S.-listed exchange traded products, but some advisors and strategists prefer to traverse just a small percentage of the overall ETP landscape. Others prefer maintaining a deeper bench of options.
“Like a baseball player that pulls the ball as much as he hits to the opposite field taking advantage of all his options, Stadion Money Management considers on a daily basis more than 1,200 securities,” said S&P Capital IQ in a new research note.
The cornerstone of Stadion’s Tactical Growth strategy is the combination of Sharpe Ratio screening and momentum analysis. Investors apply the Sharpe Ratio to gauge risk-adjusted performance.
Stadion “seeks to achieve long-term capital appreciation by attempting to participate in U.S. and international stock market gains when conditions appear favorable and by shifting to a more defensive posture, through non-correlated assets such as fixed income or commodities, when equity conditions appear unfavorable. Management is not averse to recently launched ETFs, provided there is sufficient liquidity and one year worth of index data to conduct analysis on,” according to S&P Capital IQ.
At the end of April, the strategy held 11 ETFs, including prosaic fare such as the iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: IVV) and the Vanguard Growth ETF (NYSEArca: VUG), both of which are rated overweight by S&P Capital IQ.
At the sector level, Stadion’s choices for its Tactical Growth strategy are defensive and include the Vanguard Utilities ETF (NYSEArca: VPU) and the Vanguard Health Care ETF (NYSEArca: VHT), both of which also garner overweight ratings from S&P Capital IQ.
While health care ETFs have rebounded a bit from the biotech-induced tumble seen in March and part of April (VHT is up 1.6% over the past month), utilities stocks and ETFs have quietly struggled. Since the start of May, VPU is down nearly 4%. [Suspicious Decline for Utilities ETFs]