Quant charts explained: Snail Trail

The Snail Trail shows the excess return and excess risk of an investment relative to a benchmark

What does the chart show?

The Snail Trail illustrates what the excess return and excess risk of the product over a specified benchmark and the changes over time

How to interpret the chart

The chart is split into four quadrants:

  • Top Left Quadrant: Product has outperformed benchmark with relatively lower risk
  • Top Right Quadrant: Product has outperformed benchmark with relatively higher risk
  • Bottom Left Quadrant: Product has underperformed benchmark with relatively lower risk
  • Bottom Right Quadrant: Product has underperformed benchmark with relatively higher risk

A trail that stays in the same quadrant shows consistent relative performance, while trails that cross quadrants indicate inconsistent relative performance

When to use the chart

This chart is useful for benchmark-aware strategies, it shows how excess return and excess risk change over time

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