These terms suggest the market is due to reverse the current trend, causing investors to rotate into or out of an investment class or sector. An example of a stock market cycle occurred following the Great Recession of 2008. The market bottomed in March 2009, which began the accumulation phase of the next cycle. The mark-up phase continued for several years before hitting the distribution stage in early 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic roiled the stock market. However, by April 2020, the market bottomed, starting another accumulation phase. For one thing, the economic cycle can change unpredictably, which may not give you enough time to make the necessary adjustments before a loss occurs.

The cost of goods sold is equivalent to the cost of materials for the products plus labor. While the average inventory refers to the sum of the inventory of the first and last month of a given period and divide it by two. Founded in 1993, The Motley Fool is a financial services company dedicated to making the world smarter, happier, and richer.

  • Stocks get oversold and overbought – we need a system to benefit from these biases in the market.
  • If you shop at night, just before the store closes, you can really save a lot of money on your perishables for the next few days.
  • While defensive or non-cyclical stocks can perform well when the economy is slowing down, cyclical stocks tend to do better when the economy is strong.
  • Sector rotation is the movement of money invested in stocks from one industry to another as investors and traders anticipate the next stage of the economic cycle.

Fluctuations in the business cycle are essentially distinct changes in the rate of growth in economic activity. This includes 3 key cycles—the corporate profit cycle, the credit cycle, and the inventory cycle—as well as changes in the employment situation and monetary policy. The business cycle, which reflects the fluctuations of activity in an economy, can be a critical determinant of equity sector performance over the intermediate term. A typical business cycle features a period of economic growth, followed by a period of slowing growth, and then a contraction, or recession. It helps if you’ve assigned expiry dates to your various batches so that everyone in your supply chain knows what’s happening right up to when your product reaches the shelf. If you have a robust inventory management system in place that tracks the information, you’ll know exactly when to push stock from your warehouse to your store so that it doesn’t become obsolete.


Today, you can invest in sector-based mutual funds or exchange-traded funds (ETFs) to gain exposure to entire segments of the market. These vehicles enable you to gain the desired sector allocations without having to invest large amounts of capital. They also allow you to more easily execute a sector rotation strategy and tactically adjust your equity portfolios in order to increase exposures to sectors you feel have the best return potential. The strategy calls for increasing allocations to sectors that are expected to prosper during each phase of the business cycle while under allocating to sectors or industries that are expected to underperform. The goal of this strategy is to construct a portfolio that will produce investment returns superior to that of the overall market.

  • Sector rotation strategies also increase volatility because your portfolio will be more (and less) exposed to various sectors compared with a buy-and-hold strategy that tracks the broader stock market.
  • For example, they can moderate their investment activity during euphoric periods toward the end of a bull market run as the economy peaks and stocks head toward distribution and mark-down phases.
  • Sector rotation strategies may help you align your portfolio with your market outlook and the different phases of the business cycle.
  • Here you can find more than 200 trading strategies similar to the above strategies.
  • Items that are seasonal or considered fads may fail to move even when displayed prominently and offered at a discount.

You will avoid losing customers when you have no goods to offer and you will even be able to win new ones. By calculating both turnover and security rates, you will be able to know the sales flow of your company. With this you will be able to offer a better service to your customers avoiding stock breakages.

The risks involved: why rotation strategy for stocks may fail

This may allow you to capitalize on a change in economic conditions and earn higher returns. In perishable goods, it is applied by placing the products with earlier expiry dates to the front of the shelves, so that they will be sold before the ones with later expiry dates. This is done mainly at stores selling food items, such as grocery stores, coffee shops and convenience stores, and also the ones selling drugs and beauty & personal care products, such as pharmacies and beauty stores. In contrast, more defensive assets, such as Treasury bonds and safe-haven commodities, typically experience the opposite pattern. Stock and sector rotation is when you switch between different asset classes or stocks. In this article, we look at different types of stock and sector rotations and why they make sense.

Stock Loss Mitigation

Shoppers, on the most part, will simply walk up to a shelf and take the front most box of the product they are looking for; this is especially true if they are in a hurry. They will generally also, unless they are specifically looking for a product that will last longer, not pay much attention to sell by/use by dates. If products with an early sell by date are at the front, and later ones at the back, they will be sold first.

The existence of a fiduciary duty does not prevent the rise of potential conflicts of interest. Because of their narrow focus, sector investments tend to be more volatile than investments that diversify across many sectors and companies. For example, by following it, you can reduce the cost of stock expiring on your shelf, the cost of the damage to your brand image and the cost of customer returns.

Understanding the market cycle

The rotation is visible when a previously struggling sector starts outperforming. Sector rotation emerged as a theory from the analysis of data from the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) that demonstrates that economic cycles have been fairly consistent since at least 1854. Most, if not all, packaged bookkeeping vs accounting products, will have either a sell by date on them or a display until date; in practice, these are exactly the same thing. After this date, it is either illegal for the store to sell them (this is the case in Ireland) or the quality will have deteriorated to the point at which nobody will buy them.

Shifting items to the fore front of display shelves are sometimes backed with offering discount off the regular retail price. For instance, in an effort to get as much gain as possible, a store might give a discount of about 50% on a tin of milk which has almost reached its expiry date. Sometimes, meats and other perishable goods are marked in an effort rotate them before they gets spoilt. The rotated stock is shifted to a position that is more obvious than the fresh meats, thereby increasing the chances that buyers will spot the meat and buy them to be eaten as soon as possible. Another way of using the sector rotation strategy is to invest in sector-based exchange-traded funds (ETFs) to gain exposure to entire segments of the market.

As this sell-by date approaches, merchants tend to move these items to the front of the display shelves, placing newer products behind them. For casual shoppers who do not pay attention to these dates, the chance that they will simply select the item at the front of the shelf is much higher. Nonetheless, a sector rotation strategy exposes your portfolio to higher volatility, and it may end up underperforming the general market. Diversification and using a weighted system may reduce overall risk, but it does not ensure a profit or guarantee against a loss. Some of the industries within each sector may have significantly different fundamentals and may not perform as expected in that phase of the economic cycle. Of course, sector rotation strategies may help you align your portfolio with your market outlook and the different phases of the business cycle.

What Is Sector Rotation? How It Works and Importance in Investing

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Although stock rotation is made use of in every retail stores, the strategy is mostly valuable for perishable products like fresh or packaged foods. A lot of commercially packaged products like dairy goods, canned goods, and cereal, have an expiry date which means that the item must be removed from display or sold by a certain date. So, as the date approaches, vendors tend to place these particular products in the front of the shelves and then putting the newer products at the back. For usual shoppers who don’t pay special attention to dates, there’s a higher chance that they will pick the product in the front. In fact, most of the bull market occurs during the early phase of the economic cycle.

Supermarkets and convenience stores commonly rotate stock on an ongoing basis. Moving products to the front of the display are sometimes augmented with offering some sort of discount off the usual retail price. For example, a supermarket may apply a discount of up to 50% on a gallon of milk that is about to reach its sell-by date in an effort to obtain as much profit from the item as possible.


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