alexjnelson

S&P 500 Earnings Yield Spread

This indicator compares the attractiveness of equities relative to the risk-free rate of return, by comparing the earnings yields of S&P 500 companies to the 10Y treasury yields. "Earnings yield" refers to the net income attributable to shareholders divided by the stock's price - effectively the inverse of the PE ratio. The tangible meaning of this metric is "the annual income received by (attributable to) shareholders as a percent of the price paid to receive said income." Therefore, earnings yield is comparable to bond yields, which are "the annual income received by bond holders as a percent of the price paid to receive said income."

This indicator subtracts the earnings yield of S&P 500 companies from the current 10-year treasury bond yield, creating a "spread" between the yields that determines whether equities are currently an attractive investment relative to bonds. That is, if the S&P 500 earnings yield exceeds the 10Y treasury yield, then equity investors are receiving more attributable income per dollar paid than bondholders, which could be an indication that equities are an attractive purchase relative to the risk-free rate. The same applies vice-versa; if the 10Y treasury yield exceeds that of the S&P 500 earnings yield, then equities may not be an attractive investment relative to the risk-free rate.

Since data on S&P 500 companies' earnings yields are pulled on a monthly basis, this indicator should be used on a monthly timeframe or longer. Historical data has shown that the critical zones for the indicator are at -4% and +3%, i.e. when equities are trading with a 4% greater yield than 10Y T-bonds and when equities are trading with a 3% lower yield than 10Y T-bonds, respectively. In the "Oversold" case (-4%), equities are trading at a steep discount to the risk-free rate and has often represented a strong buying opportunity. In the "Overbought" case (+3%), equities are trading at a premium to the risk-free rate, which may be an indication that caution should be exercised within the stock market. When the indicator first crosses into "Oversold" territory, this has historically been near a the bottom of a crash on the S&P 500 . When the indicator first crosses into the "Overbought" territory, this has often precipitated a correction of 15% on the S&P 500 .

Some notable "misses," crashes that this indicator missed, include the 1973 stock market crash and the 2008 global recession. However, both of these cases were largely precipitated by unprecedented economic events, as opposed to stocks simply being "Overbought" relative to treasury yields. Nonetheless, this indicator should form only a small portion of your fundamental analysis , as there are many macroeconomic factors that could lead to major corrections besides the impact of treasury yields. Furthermore, it should also be noted that since markets are "forward looking," future earnings growth or interest rate hikes may become "priced into" both the stock and bond markets, affecting the outputs of this indicator. However, since both the stock and bond markets should account for these factors simultaneously, the impact has historically been minimized.

I hope you find this indicator to be beneficial to your strategies. Stay safe, and happy trading.
Versionshinweise: Updated the source for treasury yields from DGS10 (US10Y constant maturity rate) to the US10Y (US10Y market yield). Shoutout to @wealthiness for pointing this out!
Versionshinweise: Updated with a clean chart
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