When Durand Capital Partners was launched, much thought was given to choosing the name that would capture the American Dream. It was named “Durand” because its founding symbolized the beginning of an “American Dream” on Durand Street, a well-known thoroughfare on the campus of Michigan State University.
Durand Capital Partners' primary strategy is the U.S. All-Cap Core, and is based on that idea of the “American Dream.” The United States has taken its fair share of lumps in the last few years, but the great thing about America is no matter what diversity we face or how hard we get hit, for over 200 hundred years we have always gotten back up. In turn, our democracy usually learns and becomes stronger and more determined than before to persevere for our families and way of life. This philosophy is at the core of how our team goes about picking stocks for both the domestic and our international strategy. We focus on companies that are strong and stable, the type of firms that can take a punch and keep standing, the type of corporation that can weather the storm and come out better than the rest of its peers.
Americans really have two main goals in life as we view it, to grow and prosper, and maybe even more important, to provide for and protect our family and loved ones. Again, this is the focus of the strategy; identify companies that will grow and prosper, and find stocks that will protect your capital when things hit a rough patch. Our team goal with this strategy is to participate when things are going well, but to PROTECT at all costs when things are not. We believe in the American dream and valued based investing.
Durand Capital Partners adheres to the philosophy called the "small p” and the "BIG P”.
- The “small p” stands for participate.
- We want to participate when the market is doing well.
- The “BIG P” stands for PROTECT.
- We focus everyday on PROTECTING investors’ assets and mitigating risk as much as possible.
In our view, it is much more important to manage our strategies with an eye on capital preservation and risk mitigation than it is to focus on swinging for the fences. We feel that if we can minimize the draw-downs then we also minimize the need to be overly aggressive.
- Unconstrained equity strategy
- Minimize individual position concentration through systematic profit- realization process
- Ability to raise cash to mitigate risk & take advantage of opportunities
- Great compliment to a passive equity holding or aggressive active equity strategy
Seven Metrics is the internal name for our mutual fund tactical rules-based strategy. These seven metrics serve to guide us in tactically managing the portfolio, the approach has expanded over the years as the markets, and economic conditions have continued to evolve/change. We have a rigorous process for both the buy and sell-side of our strategy that is based on the defined listed below. Dunamis is the Seven Metric strategy that has been white labeled for Regal Investment Advisors. Here are the Seven Metrics that we view on a daily basis to manage strategy:
Metric #1 — Federal Funds
The federal funds rate is the interest rate at which depository institutions exchange funds maintained at the Federal Reserve. The Federal Reserve adjusts this rate to manage liquidity in the markets. We examine current rates, historical rates, and future rates.
It reflects federal reserve monetary policy. Generally, only applicable to the most creditworthy institutions when they borrow and lend overnight funds to each other.
We examine current rates, historical rates, and future rates. The federal funds rate is one of the most influential interest rates for the U.S. economy since it reflects federal reserve monetary policy and effects financial conditions.
Metric #2 — Yield
Yield refers to the earnings generated and realized on an investment over a particular period. It's expressed as a percentage based on the invested amount, current market value, or face value of the security. It includes the interest earned or dividends received from holding a particular security. Depending on the valuation (fixed vs. fluctuating) of the security, yields may be classified as known or anticipated.
2-Year Treasury / 10-Year Treasury Yield Curve
We use the slope of the yield curve as an indicator of the overall health of the credit market. If the curve is upward sloping, we view this as a positive sentiment. If the slope of the curve starts flattening, we are cautious and begin monitoring closely.
BAA Corporate Bond vs. 10-Year Treasury Spread
Corporate bonds are characterized by higher yields, in comparison with government treasuries, due to increased default risk. Our management team weighs the risk and return of these bonds against the returns of the 10-year Treasury. If we see a decrease in the moving average spread, we view it as a vote of confidence by corporate America. Conversely, if the range begins to widen, it indicates a higher level of uncertainty in the global financial markets
10-Year Treasury Yield
Treasury bond yields (or rates) are tracked by investors for many reasons. The U.S. government pays the yields on the bonds as "interest" for borrowing money (via selling the bond. The 10-year is used as a proxy for many other important financial matters such as mortgage rates. We monitor bond yields as we feel they are indicative of investor appetite for risk. When confidence is high, investors choose riskier assets over safe-haven bonds. Bond prices drop, and yields inch higher. When confidence is low, there is more demand for safe-haven treasuries. Bond prices go up, and yields fall.
Metric #3 — Technicals
Technical analysis is a trading discipline employed to evaluate investments and identify trading opportunities by analyzing statistical trends gathered from trading activity, such as price movement and volume.
We monitor technical indicators that include investor sentiment, moving averages, and price action in equity markets.
Metric #4 — Volatility
Created by the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), the Volatility Index, or VIX, is a real-time market index that represents the market's expectation of 30-day forward-looking volatility. Derived from the price inputs of the S&P 500 index options, it provides a measure of market risk and investors' sentiments. It is also referred to by other names like "Fear Gauge" or "Fear Index." We monitor the VIX to measure market risk, fear, and stress.
Metric #5 — Confidence
Confidence plays a vital role in economic growth. The monitoring of consumer confidence is based on the premise that if consumers are confident, they tend to purchase more goods and services, which should, inevitably, stimulate the whole economy. Monitoring CEO confidence helps us determine their views on where the economy is heading as well. CEO confidence is often reflected in capital expenditures (CAPEX).Examples of CAPEX include new projects or investments by a firm.
Metric #6 — Fundamentals
Fundamentals include the necessary qualitative and quantitative information that contributes to the financial or economic well-being and the subsequent financial valuation of a company, security, or currency. Where qualitative information includes elements that cannot be directly measured, such as management experience, quantitative analysis (QA) uses mathematics and statistics to understand the asset and predict movement.
We examine these fundamentals to develop an estimate as to whether the underlying asset is considered a worthwhile investment, and if there is fair valuation in the market.
Metric #7 — Employment
Few economic data points are as closely watched as measures of employment and unemployment. The Bureau of Labor Statistics provides a broad range of statistics covering jobs and joblessness. We examine the jobless numbers and the 4-week moving average of initial claims to determine this metric.
If you are a Financial Professional and desire to white label the Seven Metrics strategy, please contact us:
Portfolio Management Team
Sonya has more than 15 years of financial markets experience, including positions in operations, trading, and asset portfolio management with the Bank of Montreal. Sonya received her B.S. in Economics from the University of Illinois. She is also a CFA Level III candidate and is currently in the MBA program at the University of Illinois.