Back test

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Back Test

To use past data to predict future events. Researchers use back testing to find relationships between apparently unrelated events and determine if one causes the other. One may conduct back testing to inform one's investment decisions or strategy, though the practice is not always accurate because a great number of inputs cause economic events.

Back test.

A back test simulates the investment return that an investment strategy would have produced over a specific period.

For example, someone who wanted to evaluate a strategy of buying after stock splits might test the effect of having purchased 500 additional shares in the large-cap stocks in a hypothetical portfolio each time one of the stocks split during the period from 1957 to the present.

Back testing is sometimes used to support a current investment strategy by demonstrating that it would have enjoyed strong past performance. Critics point out that the testing period that's chosen has a significant impact on the results and that past performance doesn't guarantee future returns.

References in periodicals archive ?
Historical backtests of the Retail model indicate that the model would have outperformed the equal-weighted retail universe by an annualized average of 14% from Jan 1979 to July 2006, ignoring transactions costs.