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Moving Averages: Month-End Preview

June 29, 2015

by Doug Short

Here is an advance preview of the monthly moving averages we track after the close of the last business day of the month. At this point, before the open on the last day of the month, all three S&P 500 strategies are signaling "invested" -- unchanged from last month. Three of the five Ivy Portfolio ETFs - iShares Barclays 7-10 Year Treasury (IEF),Vanguary REIT Index ETF (VNQ), and PowerShares DB Commodity Index Tracking (DBC) - are signaling "cash", compared with last month's single DBC cash signal.

If a position is less than 2% from a signal, it is highlighted in yellow.

Month-End Preview

Note: Our inclusion of the S&P 500 index updates is intended to illustrate a popular moving moving-average timing strategy. The index signals also give a general sense of how US equities are behaving. However, for followers of a moving average strategy, the general practice is to make buy/sell decisions on the signals for each specific investment, not based on a broad index. Even if you're investing in a fund that tracks the S&P 500 (e.g., Vanguard's VFINX or the SPY ETF) the moving average signals for the funds will occasionally differ from the underlying index because of dividend reinvestment, which is not factored into the index closes.

The Ivy Portfolio

The second of the three adjacent tables previews the 10-month SMA timing signals for the five asset classes highlighted in The Ivy Portfolio.

We've also included (third table) the 12-month SMA timing signals for the Ivy ETFs in response to the many requests to include this slightly longer timeframe.


After the end-of-month market close, we'll update the monthly moving average feature with charts to illustrate.

The bottom line is that these moving-average signals have a good track record for long-term gains while avoiding major losses. They're not fool-proof, but they essentially dodged the 2007-2009 bear and have captured significant gains since the initial buy signals after the March 2009 low.