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Does the Turn-of-the-Month Effect Work for Asset Classes?

| | Posted in: Calendar Effects

Does the Turn-of-the-Month Effect, a concentration of positive stock market returns around the turns of calendar months, work across a broad set of asset classes. To investigate, we measure turn-of-the-month (TOTM) returns for the following nine asset class exchange-traded funds (ETF) used in the "Simple Asset Class ETF Momentum Strategy" and the "Simple Asset Class ETF Value Strategy":

  • PowerShares DB Commodity Index Tracking (DBC)
  • iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index (EEM)
  • iShares JPMorgan Emerging Markets Bond Fund (EMB
  • iShares MSCI EAFE Index (EFA)
  • SPDR Gold Shares (GLD)
  • iShares Russell 2000 Index (IWM)
  • iShares iBoxx $ Investment Grade Corporate Bond (LQD)
  • SPDR S&P 500 (SPY)
  • iShares Barclays 20+ Year Treasury Bond (TLT)
  • Vanguard REIT ETF (VNQ)

We define TOTM as the eight-trading day interval from the close five trading days before the first trading day of a month to the close on the fourth trading day of the month. Using daily dividend-adjusted closes for these ETFs from their respective inceptions (ranging from February 1993 for SPY to December 2007 for EMB) through mid-May 2020, we find that:

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