Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (2024)

Generally momentum in physics is defined as ‘mass in motion’. As per the Newton’s first law of motion that says a body will remain in uniform motion in a straight line unless acted upon by an external force. But what exactly does “Momentum” means in the world of investing? In this article/blog we will discuss about the in’s and out’s of what is momentum and how it works as an investment strategy.

1) What exactly momentum means in terms of investing?

Momentum refers to the tendency of winning stocks to continue to perform well and losing stocks to perform poorly in the near future. In momentum strategy the stocks are also selected based on their performance in the past with the idea that they will continue to outperform. The investors are attracted to a company whose price is on an upward trajectory thus opening a new way of buying at high and selling higher, instead of the traditional idea of buying at low and selling high, generating higher alpha. Momentum strategies exploit this continuation in return patterns in order to make a profit.

2) How is momentum defined & identified?

Stocks in Momentum could be selected via Time Series Momentum or Relative Strength Momentum which are two distinct measures used to evaluate the performance of stocks.

Time series/relative momentum - Time-series momentum, also known as absolute momentum, assesses a stock's past performance by considering its own returns independently from the returns of other stocks.

Cross sectional momentum - On the other hand, cross-sectional momentum, measures a stock's performance in comparison to other stocks.

3) Why does this strategy works?

1) Behavioural bias

a) Disposition effect - A more behavioural explanation of momentum is based on the disposition-effect. The disposition effect refers to the investor’s willingness to sell “winners” too quickly and to hold “losers” stocks for too long. According to this explanation, investors who suffer from disposition-effect will tend to underreact to news.

b) Anchoring Bias - Alternatively, George & Hwang (2004) explain momentum with an anchoring bias, where investor’s decisions are influenced by or driven towards a certain reference point. The anchor in their study is a stock’s 52 week high price, which most newspapers reporting on the stock market publish. The authors propose that for stocks near their 52-week high, new positive information is at first only partially incorporated into prices because traders are reluctant to cross the anchoring point. Similarly, bad news does not to the extent that would be warranted——-drive down prices of stocks that are already far away from their 52-week high.

2) Information Diffusion

Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (1)

4) Global evidence of the momentum strategy

The existence of momentum is a well-established empirical fact. The return premium is evident in 215+ years (US equity data from 1801-2016), dating back to the Victorian age in UK equity data, in over 20 years of out of sample evidence from its original discovery, in 40 other countries, and in more than a dozen other asset classes. Some of this evidence predates academic research in financial economics, suggesting that the momentum premium has been part of markets since their very existence, well before researchers studied them as a science.

5) Let’s have a look what MSCI has to say about momentum strategy

“MSCI Research shows, on a historical basis, the momentum factor has been one of the strongest generators of excess returns.”

Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (2)

6) Does this strategy works in India?

Yes this strategy works in India as well! Nifty Index has its own Momentum Index which is based on the momentum factor where it churns their portfolio every 6 months according to the momentum characteristics of the stocks.

Nifty India mainly have 2 momentum indices named as:

  • Nifty 200 momentum 30 Index
  • Nifty Midcap 150 momentum 50 Index

Let’s have a look at the historical performances between Nifty Midcap 150 Momentum 50 Index vs Nifty Midcap 150.

Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (3)

7) There are mainly two forms of momentum investing. Let’s understand what’s the difference between them

  • Passive - Passive management emphasises more on the relative method of choosing momentum bearing stocks where it compares the returns relative to its peers.
  • Active - Active management uses the relative as well as absolute method of choosing momentum bearing stocks where it compares the relative performance of the stock as well as compares the past performance of its own price in order to analyse that the stock has actually risen in value as well

Let’s understand the advantages of active management over passive:

Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (4)

8) Introducing Samco Active Momentum Fund

India’s 1st active momentum fund that aims to invest in stocks that are showing momentum characteristics using a proprietary momentum-seeking algorithm to generate superior risk adjusted returns.

▶️ NFO Closes on 29th June 2023

🚨 Subscriptions in this scheme shall be accepted during NFO & be restricted post NFO until further notice.

9) How does Samco Mutual Fund defines and identify momentum?

Samco has developed a proprietary momentum-seeking algorithm called the Momentrix Framework which aims to identify momentum in stocks right at the beginning of the catching momentum. This framework is a combination of the momentum definition of index methodologies, well defined momentum characteristics and a distinct pattern identified by the promoter and CIO of the AMC over their investment career. The Momentrix framework is divided in three parts -

  • Signal generating engine - Gives us buy, hold and sell signals
  • Position Sizing and Risk management Engine - Gives us ideal position size of all buy signals with regards to the risk reward ratio
  • Portfolio Management Engine - Give us the model portfolio using signals and their position size, which stock to buy, sell or switch. It also indicates the periods of anti-momentum

10) Data points used by Samco MF to identify momentum characteristics

  • Price
  • Volume
  • Shareholding pattern
  • Bulk deals / block data
  • Money flows
  • Impact cost
  • Free float market capitalisation
  • F&O data including open interest
  • Broader market levels including sectoral indices

11) Understanding the scheme strategy

Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (5)

12) Portfolio construction of this strategy

Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (6)

13) Asset Allocation Strategy according to Momentum & Anti-Momentum factors

Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (7)

14) Top 5 reasons to invest in Samco Active Momentum Fund

  • India’s first Active momentum fund - Select stocks in form, drops stocks out of form
  • Powerful momentum seeking algorithm - Use of technology & big data to mine deep data and generate insights to identify both absolute and relative momentum
  • Captures momentum across wide universe - Aims to find hidden opportunities from a wide investible universe of 750 stocks allows identification of opportunities from the time companies including small or micro sized companies.
  • Robust risk management - Negative filters to avoid outliers, Hedging during periods of anti-momentum
  • Speed & Agility - Rebalancing in real time on loss of form & momentum

15) Scheme Features

Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (8)

Conclusion: As an investment opportunity, Momentum strategy has its own pros and cons. This strategy comes with the potential to generate a significant alpha but on the flip side it comes with a high risk.

One needs to evaluate their risk profile and choose an investment portfolio according to their goals and risk bearing capacity. Thus it is best to do your own due diligence and decide whether Momentum strategy suits one’s style of investing.

Visit our Knowledge Center for more articles on Samco Mutual Funds. You can also find many valuable blogs in our Help and Support section.

Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (9)

As an expert in finance and investment, I bring to you a comprehensive understanding of the momentum strategy, combining theoretical knowledge with practical insights. My experience in the field allows me to delve into the intricacies of momentum in investing, providing a thorough analysis of its definition, identification, underlying behavioral biases, global evidence, and its application in the Indian market.

Let's break down the key concepts discussed in the article:

  1. Momentum in Investing:

    • Momentum in investing refers to the tendency of winning stocks to continue performing well and losing stocks to continue performing poorly in the near future.
    • The strategy involves selecting stocks based on their past performance with the expectation that they will continue to outperform.
  2. Definition and Identification of Momentum:

    • Momentum can be measured through Time Series Momentum (absolute momentum) and Relative Strength Momentum (cross-sectional momentum).
    • Time Series Momentum evaluates a stock's past performance independently, while Relative Strength Momentum compares a stock's performance to other stocks.
  3. Reasons Behind Momentum Strategy Success:

    • Behavioral biases such as the disposition effect and anchoring bias contribute to the success of momentum strategies.
    • Investors' tendencies to sell winners too quickly and hold losers for too long play a role in creating momentum.
  4. Information Diffusion:

    • The article suggests that information diffusion is another factor influencing momentum in stock prices.
  5. Global Evidence of Momentum Strategy:

    • Momentum as an investment strategy has been observed across various time periods, countries, and asset classes, indicating its historical and widespread presence.
  6. Momentum Strategy in India:

    • The Nifty Index in India has its own Momentum Index, with historical performances available for indices like Nifty 200 Momentum 30 Index and Nifty Midcap 150 Momentum 50 Index.
  7. Forms of Momentum Investing:

    • Passive and active momentum investing are two forms discussed in the article. Active management combines relative and absolute methods for stock selection.
  8. Introduction of Samco Active Momentum Fund:

    • The article introduces the Samco Active Momentum Fund as India's first active momentum fund, highlighting its aim to generate superior risk-adjusted returns using a proprietary momentum-seeking algorithm.
  9. Samco Mutual Fund's Momentum-Seeking Algorithm:

    • Samco Mutual Fund employs a proprietary algorithm called the Momentrix Framework to identify momentum in stocks. The framework includes signal generation, position sizing, risk management, and portfolio management engines.
  10. Data Points Used by Samco MF:

    • Samco MF uses various data points, including price, volume, shareholding pattern, bulk deals, money flows, impact cost, free float market capitalization, and F&O data to identify momentum characteristics.
  11. Scheme Strategy, Portfolio Construction, and Asset Allocation:

    • The article outlines the strategy, portfolio construction, and asset allocation approach of the Samco Active Momentum Fund.
  12. Top 5 Reasons to Invest in Samco Active Momentum Fund:

    • The reasons include being India's first active momentum fund, a powerful momentum-seeking algorithm, a broad investible universe, robust risk management, and speed/agility in rebalancing.
  13. Scheme Features:

    • The features of the Samco Active Momentum Fund are presented, emphasizing its technology-driven approach, broad investment universe, and risk management.
  14. Conclusion:

    • The article concludes by highlighting the potential for significant alpha generation with momentum strategies but also acknowledges the associated high risk. It encourages investors to evaluate their risk profiles and align their investments with their goals.

In summary, this article provides a comprehensive overview of momentum in investing, supported by evidence, real-world examples, and the introduction of a specific mutual fund to implement an active momentum strategy.

Momentum Strategy in Investing Explained | SAMCO Mutual Fund (2024)


What is the momentum strategy in mutual funds? ›

Momentum investing is a strategy designed to profit from the persistence of prevailing trends in the market. This investing strategy involves prioritising the purchase of assets experiencing upward momentum and selling them when indications suggest a weakening trend.

Is it good to invest in momentum mutual fund? ›

Benefits of Momentum Investing

This is primarily because when chosen correctly, momentum stocks give higher future returns even though the investment is made at a high level already. So, the returns can be significantly high if the market is timed right.

Is momentum a good investment strategy? ›

Is momentum a sound investment strategy? Momentum investing works when you can identify price trends and ride bullish securities to higher heights. However, earning consistent returns with the strategy is much more complicated than it sounds.

What is the best momentum strategy? ›

Successful momentum trading involves identifying strong price momentum, selecting appropriate technical indicators for market analysis, such as the RSI and MACD, and setting trade parameters including strategic entry and exit points, stop losses, and position sizes relative to a trader's risk tolerance.

How does momentum strategy work? ›

Momentum traders will seek to identify how strong the trend is in a given direction, then open a position to take advantage of the expected price change and close the position when the trend starts to lose its strength.

What is an example of a momentum investing strategy? ›

Once the momentum portfolio stocks are identified, the idea is to buy all the momentum stocks in equal proportion. So if the capital available is Rs. 200,000/- and there are 12 stocks, the idea is to buy Rs. 16,666/- worth of each stock (200,000/12).

How to implement momentum strategy? ›

The market has grown more unpredictable in recent years, and yet, at its most basic, a successful momentum strategy still involves these four elements:
  1. Choosing the assets you want to trade.
  2. Getting into each trade “on time”
  3. Sizing your positions correctly.
  4. Knowing when to exit.
Nov 17, 2023

What is the monthly momentum strategy? ›

Building A Momentum Strategy

One of the strategies involves a set of rules aimed at investing in the best-performing stocks over the past 6 months for the subsequent 6 months. In the same context, one can also short (or in other words sell) the worst performers from the past 6 months for the next 6 months.

Does momentum make an attractive product for mutual fund investors? ›

It is important for investment managers to regularly and systematically analyse sector and fund performance. Momentum investing has several benefits that make it an attractive strategy for investors looking to maximise their returns. One of the more obvious advantages is the potential for higher returns.

Does momentum strategy still work? ›

Momentum investing can work, but it may not be practical for all investors. As an individual investor, practicing momentum investing will most likely lead to overall portfolio losses.

Do momentum strategies still work? ›

The empirical research demonstrates that, on average, investing in previous winners and short-selling previous losers has offered significant returns that cannot be explained by other common risk factors. But momentum also displayed huge tail risk, as there were short but persistent periods of highly negative returns.

What is the most effective momentum indicator? ›

Relative Strength Index (RSI)

The RSI is one of the most widely used momentum indicators. It shows the momentum of an asset's price and can be used to identify potentially overbought or oversold situations.

What is the 11am rule in trading? ›

​The 11 am rule suggests that if a market makes a new intraday high for the day between 11:15 am and 11:30 am EST, then it's said to be very likely that the market will end the day near its high.

What are the advantages of momentum strategy? ›

One of the main benefits of momentum trading is that it can generate high returns in a short period of time, especially in volatile and trending markets. By following the direction of the dominant trend, momentum traders can capture large price movements and avoid being trapped in sideways or choppy markets.

What is a momentum trap? ›

Momentum Trap stocks are those with low durability scores, expensive valuation, but high momentum. These stocks are risky bets that investors may be drawn to due to changes in share price. They however do not necessarily justify existing valuations and share price gains.

What is the difference between momentum strategy and value strategy? ›

The momentum strategy buys assets with the strongest past return (12-month or 1-month) and expects them to outperform assets with the lowest past return. Value strategy buys assets that are fundamentally cheap and intends to gain on the assets' reversion to their long-term means.

How do you create a momentum strategy? ›

The market has grown more unpredictable in recent years, and yet, at its most basic, a successful momentum strategy still involves these four elements:
  1. Choosing the assets you want to trade.
  2. Getting into each trade “on time”
  3. Sizing your positions correctly.
  4. Knowing when to exit.
Nov 17, 2023

What is the difference between momentum strategy and value investing? ›

Value investors “buy low, sell high” while momentum investors “buy high, sell higher.” And, while value investors will take a large position in a stock only if they understand the underlying company, momentum investors care little about the underlying company – they only want to see the shares rising faster than the ...


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