We have been running the StockRanks since 2013. That is quite a long time, but arguably not long enough to explore how StockRanks perform when the market crashes. Investors have seen difficult times in recent years, but the StockRanks haven’t been through anything comparable to the crash of 2008-09. The market panicked in March 2020. However, the fall was nowhere near as deep as the falls of 1974, 2001 or 2008. Many readers will suggest that in 2020, central banks and governments just kicked the can down the road. That is to say, they ‘postponed’ a severe bear market by printing money and assuming huge levels of debt. Stocks may well face headwinds as quantitative easing winds down and governments cut the debt, very possibly through austerity. There is also geopolitical risk. So the obvious question remains: how will the StockRanks perform as we go forward? We can explore this question by analysing how they performed during bear markets that happened since 2013…

The Greek Crash of 2014-15

In 2015, many commentators expected Greece to drop out of the Eurozone. The crisis was of course an extension of the European debt crisis of 2010-12. I’m not going into economic historian mode. The key thing is that Greek markets went through a bearish phase. The Athens stock exchange was literally closed to trading by the summer of 2015. That’s how bad things got. The market technically entered a bearish phase on 16 May 2014, when the Athens General Index closed 20% down from the 60-day high it reached on 18 March 2014. We will explore how the StockRanks performed from late March 2014 through to the summer of 2015.

Methodological Considerations

Before diving in, there are a few technical points to bear in mind. Greece is a small country, with around 200 listed securities. We generate StockRanks for Greek stocks by comparing Greek companies against their peers in Southern Europe (ie. Italy, Spain and Portugal). This means that from time to time, there may be no Greek stocks in a given decile. For instance, if the Greek market crashed while Southern Europe enjoyed strong price momentum, you would find fewer Greek stocks in the decile of top MomentumRank stocks. If there were no stocks in a given decile, the performance chart would flatline.

Furthermore, we are analysing StockRank performance over a fairly short period, specifically the bear market that lasted from…

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