It’s a rare financial professional who has not seen a Callan chart. Also referred to as a Periodic Table of Investment Returns, the Chart harkens us back to the periodic table that used to adorn every science classroom in our high school days.
The classic Callan chart has rows and columns of multi-colored boxes resembling a crazy patchwork quilt drawn from all the colors of the rainbow. In the example below, each of its 20 columns represents one of the last 20 years. Within each column are boxes, each colored a unique hue to represent a given index and each containing the annual return of that index. Finally, the eight rows in each column rank the colored boxes in order of their performance for each column year.