Moving Averages: S&P Finishes August Down 1.7%

The S&P 500 closed August with a monthly loss of 1.71%, after a gain of 3.22% in July. At this point, after close on the last day of the month, two of five Ivy portfolio ETFs — iShares 7-10 Year Treasury Bond ETF (IEF) and Vanguard Real Estate ETF (VNQ) — is signaling “cash”, up from last month’s single “cash” signal.

Ivy Portfolio ETFs

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

The Ivy Portfolio

The second table above shows the current 10-month simple moving average (SMA) signal for each of the five ETFs featured in The Ivy Portfolio. The third table shows the 12-month SMAs for the same ETFs for this popular alternative strategy.

For a fascinating analysis of the Ivy portfolio strategy, see this article by Adam Butler, Mike Philbrick, and Rodrigo Gordillo: Faber’s Ivy Portfolio: As Simple as Possible, But No Simpler.

Backtesting Moving Averages

Over the past few years, we’ve used Excel to track the performance of various moving-average timing strategies. But now we use the backtesting tools available on the website. Anyone who is interested in market timing with ETFs should have a look at this website. Here are the two tools I most frequently use: