Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Historical Returns for the MSCI Emerging Markets Index (1988-2013)

The Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) Emerging Markets (EM) Index is the preeminent emerging markets equity index. I have previously discussed annual returns of the index during the 1989-2008, 1989-2009, 1988-2010, 1988-2011, and 1988-2012 time periods.

The chart below (click on the chart for a larger view) shows annual returns for the MSCI EM Index in terms of U.S. Dollars between 1988 and 2013. The returns shown below represent net dividend reinvested returns. The 2013 total return for the MSCI EM Index was -2.60%, lagging considerably behind most other major stock indexes

During the 26 years for which I have data (i.e., 1988-2013), the MSCI EM Index lost value during 11 calendar years and gained value in 15 other calendar years. The worst returns came during 2008 when the Index plummeted 53.33% during the financial crisis and the best annual gains came during 2009 when the Index soared 78.51%. As I have previously discussed, the best extended stretch of strong returns occurred between 2003 and 2007 during which the index gained an impressive 382.96%, an annualized gain of approximately 37.02%.

The annualized returns were 14.79% for the 5-year period, 11.17% for the 10-year period, 10.91% for the 15-year period, and 7.32% for the 20-year period ending in 2013. Annualized returns between 1988 and 2013 were about 11.94% and the Index had a total new return of 1,776% between 1988 and 2013. The performance of the MSCI EM Index between 1988 and 2013 greatly exceeds the 10.50% annualized return and 1,242% total return of the S&P 500 Index during the same time period.

Emerging Markets are typically critical portion of an investment portfolio of any stock market investor with a long-term investment strategy.  Investment advisers typically recommend limiting Emerging Markets to no more than 10-15% of an aggressive investor's portfolio.  Although Emerging Markets have lagged significantly behind other major indexes in recent years, I expect the trend to reverse at some point in the near future.

Monday, January 20, 2014

1980 - 2013 Stock Market Returns for Various Indices

I have posted charts showing annual stock market and bond market returns for various indices in recent years for the time periods from 1980-2006, 1980-2007, 1980-2008, 1980-2009, 1980-2010, 1980-2011, and 1980-2012.  An updated chart including returns from 2013 is shown below (click on the image for a larger view).

The chart shown below illustrates total returns for small cap indices (Russell 2000, Russell 2000 Value, and Russell 2000 Growth), large cap indices (S&P 500, S&P/Citi 500 Value, and S&P/Citi 500 Growth), a broad-based foreign stock index (Morgan Stanley Capital International Index for the developed stock markets of Europe, Australasia, and the Far East ("MSCI EAFE index")), an index of bonds (Barclays Capital Aggregate Bond Index)*, and the Nasdaq Composite Index**.

2013 was a fantastic year for stock market indices across the board as central banks around the world continued a strategy of monetary easing to provide additional liquidity to the markets.  Small caps and tech led the way, with the Russell 2000 Growth Index rising 43.30%, the Nasdaq Composite rising 40.12%, the Russell 2000 rising 38.82%, and the Russell 200 Value index rising 34.52% .  Large caps also performed well, with the S&P 500 Index rising 32.39%  The bond market, on the other hand, posted its first annual decrease in value since 1999, dropping 2.02%. 

Value indices outperformed Growth indices during the past year - the Russell 2000 Value Index was the strongest equity performer of the indices shown below for the first time since 2004, returning about 18.05%. The next best performer was the S&P 500 Value Index, which returned about 17.68% in 2012. International equities continued to rebound from the tough environment resulting from the Euro-zone issues in 2011, with the MSCI EAFE Index gaining about 22.78%. 

As shown in the chart below, the Russell 2000 Value Index provided the strongest returns by far between 1980 and 2012, returning a total of 6578%, or an annualized return of about 13.15% per year. The total return of the Russell 2000 Value Index is more than 2,200% more relative to its initial value on December 31, 1979 than the next best index tracked below, the S&P 500 Index.

* The Barclays Capital Aggregate Bond Index was known as the Lehman Brothers Aggregate Bond Index prior to 2008.
** The Nasdaq Composite Index returns include annual price increases in the Index for 1980-2009 and total returns (accounting for reinvested distributions) for 2010-2013.  I have not been able to obtain total returns for the Nasdaq Composite for calendar years prior to 2010.

 *** Edit - January 2, 2017 ***
I have updated this chart with results through 2016.