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Vanguard - Risk Attributes

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Vanguard Variable Annuity - International Portfolio
Risk Attributes

Historic Volatility Measures as of 03/31/2014

BenchmarkR-squared* Beta*
Spliced International Index0.961.08
MSCI All Country World Index ex USA0.961.08

*R-squared and beta are calculated from trailing 36-month fund returns relative to the associated benchmark.

Risks Associated with Aggressive Funds

Vanguard funds classified as aggressive are subject to extremely wide fluctuations in share prices. The unusually high volatility associated with these funds may stem from one or more of the following strategies: a concentration of fund holdings in a relatively low number of individual stocks, or in a particular sector of the stock market, or in a particular geographical region of the world; a heavy emphasis on small-capitalization stocks or growth stocks with relatively high market valuations; holdings of international stocks or bonds, which are subject to price declines caused by changes in the value of the U.S. dollar against foreign currencies; or investments in bonds that have exceptionally long average durations, whose prices are highly sensitive to changes in interest rates.


Plain Talk About Risk

The portfolio’s total return, like stock prices generally, will fluctuate within a wide range, so an investor could lose money over short or even long periods. Stock markets tend to move in cycles, with periods of rising prices and periods of falling prices. The portfolio is also subject to:

  • Stock market risk: The chance that stock prices overall will decline. Stock markets tend to move in cycles, with periods of rising stock prices and periods of falling stock prices. In addition, investments in foreign stock markets can be riskier than U.S. stock investments. The prices of foreign stocks and the prices of U.S. stocks have, at times, moved in opposite directions.
  • Investment style risk: The chance that returns from the types of stocks in which the fund invests will trail returns from the overall stock market. As a group, non-U.S. growth stocks tend to go through cycles of doing better—or worse—than the stock market in general. These periods have, in the past, lasted for as long as several years. The fund also may invest in small- and mid-capitalization stocks. Historically, these stocks have been more volatile in price than the large-cap stocks that dominate the overall market, and they often perform quite differently.
  • Country/regional risk: The chance that world events—such as political upheaval, financial troubles, or natural disasters—will adversely affect the value of securities issued by companies in foreign countries or regions. Because the fund may invest a large portion of its assets in securities of companies located in any one country or region, its performance may be hurt disproportionately by the poor performance of its investments in that area. Country/regional risk is especially high in emerging markets.
  • Currency risk: The chance that the value of a foreign investment, measured in U.S. dollars, will decrease because of unfavorable changes in currency exchange rates.
  • Manager risk: The chance that poor security selection or focus on securities in a particular sector, category, or group of companies will cause the fund to underperform relevant benchmarks or other funds with a similar investment objective.

Glossary

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