CFRA Research
What is CFRA Research?

Founded as the Center for Financial Research and Analysis in 1994, our company is known today as CFRA. Our proprietary approach blends a unique mix of fundamental equity, forensic accounting, fund, public policy and technical research with data, analytics and next-gen technology to arm clients with the financial intelligence required to meet their business and investing goals.

CFRA Research Products
What is MarketScope Advisor?

MarketScope Advisor provides financial professionals with access to extensive market commentary, independent investment analysis, and up-to-date news and data on a broad range of asset classes to improve investment and business decisions.

What are CFRA Industry Survey Reports?

CFRA’s Industry Surveys provide investors with deep insights, covering 68 industries across 11 sectors and publishing 53 unique surveys twice a year. With broad fundamental overviews, recent performance statistics and analysis of trends, CFRA helps investors understand an industry and identify key drivers.

What are CFRA STARS Ratings?

Our equity research employs our proprietary 5-level ranking system, Stock Appreciation Ranking System (STARS), for our recommendations.

  Stocks ranked 1-STARS (strong sell) by CFRA analysts

  Stocks ranked 2-STARS (sell) by CFRA analysts

  Stocks ranked 3-STARS (hold) by CFRA analysts

  Stocks ranked 4-STARS (buy) by CFRA analysts

  Stocks ranked 5-STARS (strong buy) by CFRA analysts


What are CFRA's model portfolios?

CFRA offers 15 Stock and ETF Model Portfolios with track records ranging from 10-24 years, many of which have outperformed the market over the short and long term. In addition, CFRA recently launched five new ESG Model Portfolios with track records dating back 2 years.

What is CFRA's Equity Research Methodology?

CFRA’s fundamental equity research analysts seek to identify the opportunity for excess returns by applying an “Expectations Framework” to determine equity recommendations. Our framework starts with the premise that equities derive their value from expected future cash flows. Therefore, investors are not just purchasing shares of a company, but are also buying into a set of embedded expectations about how that company is going to perform. CFRA analysts strive to correctly assess those expectations and use fundamental business and industry analysis to find companies whose shares imply expectations that are too optimistic or pessimistic. Having this variant perception is what ultimately drives the excess returns.

CFRA Research ETF Data & Analytics
What ETF products are available through CFRA's ETF Data & Analytics?

1. ETF Constituent Holdings Data

  • 100% coverage of US universe for current holdings; Expanding global coverage.
  • 7 Years of point-in-time holdings history; Data updated daily.

2. ETF Reference & Classifications Data

  • 98% global coverage; Updated daily.
  • ‘Survivorship bias’ free history that includes closed and changed ETFs.
  • Proprietary ‘smart beta’ classifications framework.

3. ETF Data Visualization Platform

  • Interactive dashboards for ETF launches, market share and screening.

4. ETF Core Stats

  • Daily NAV, Shares Outstanding, Volumes, Price Based Returns and Volatility.
  • 100% coverage of US universe; Data available from fund inception.
  • Complete history of flows and returns back to inception.
What ETF data sets does CFRA provide?

What ETF data sets does CFRA provide? CFRA provides three types of ETF data sets:

  1. ETF Holdings: Details of the underlying constituent securities in each ETF with names, identifiers, and weights for each security.
  2. ETF Classifications: A comprehensive ETF product list with ~90 columns that capture detailed reference data and information about its specific investment objectives.
  3. ETF Statistics: ETF flows and returns published for multiple time periods.
Is CFRA’s ETF data proprietary or sourced from a third-party provider?

All of CFRA’s ETF data is proprietary. The raw input holdings data is sourced from primary sources and then cleaned and organized by CFRA. All the ETF classifications data is generated in-house using CFRA’s proprietary multi-tagging methodology. The data is also used to support CFRA’s global ETF ratings and research.

What is the coverage by region for CFRA’s ETF data?

CFRA has comprehensive coverage of US, Canada, Europe, and significant coverage of Asia and the rest of the world. For more details about coverage contact us.

What types of clients use CFRA’s ETF data?

CFRA’s ETF data is widely used in both the institutional and wealth management segments. Institutional clients like asset managers and hedge funds use it for investment analysis, trading and risk management. Wealth clients including brokerage and fintech firms use CFRA’s ETF data to build applications for retail investors and financial advisors.

This ETF data provides investors access and insight to:

  • Search the universe to find ETFs for specific asset classes, strategies and types of exposure.
  • Compare ETFs based on cost, investment objectives and holdings.
  • Analyze the underlying constituents to understand sector, factor and other risk exposures.
CFRA’s FUNDynamix ETF Data Platform
What is FUNDynamix?

Powered by CFRA’s ETF database, FUNDynamix gives ETF professionals and wealth management platforms daily insight, specialized monitoring, and detailed analysis capabilities so they can better research, track, and monitor the ETF universe to stay ahead of the markets and their competition.

Who would benefit from using FUNDynamix?

While any client can benefit from additional insight into the ETF universe, FUNDynamix is specifically designed for ETF focused professionals including:

  • Product management teams at ETF issuers
  • ETF distribution teams
  • Portfolio managers and investment teams
  • Technology and platform teams in both wealth and institutional environments
  • Compliance teams across all client types
  • Service providers in the ETF ecosystem
What are the key features of FUNDynamix?

The initial launch of FUNDynamix has two primary features to aid ETF focused professionals. The latest release builds on these two features with enhanced market trends and themes along with the addition of dynamic screening capabilities.

  • Trend analysis to better monitor flows and performance of nearly 100 granular ETF categories and themes.
  • ETF deep dive to better analyze historical ETF holdings exposure and flows over time.
  • NEW: Screening Tools allow users to screen the entire ETF universe using a combination of granular themes, factors, and reference categories
  • NEW: Custom Watchlists allow users to create screens and lists based on data that is important to them
  • NEW: CFRA Curated Lists give users pre-made screens based on trending themes and categories of interest
Why was FUNDynamix created?

Despite the rapid growth of the ETF industry over the last decade, the supporting analytical tools have not evolved accordingly, with many professionals still limited to outdated style boxes or ranking methodologies.

There is a growing base of ETF focused professionals and wealth management firms who require specialized data and software to effectively monitor the ETF universe and deliver a superior user experience to their advisors and retail clients.

Which geographic regions does FUNDynamix include?

FUNDynamix currently includes all ETFs listed in the US. However, CFRA has data for ETFs globally in its core API and data feed products and plans to add this global ETF coverage to the FUNDynamix platform in the future.

Where is the underlying data for FUNDynamix sourced from?

All the data that powers FUNDynamix is owned and maintained by CFRA, as part of its core ETF data business. Our ETF data is sourced, cleaned, curated, and delivered by CFRA’s data collection and operations teams.

What makes this FUNDynamix unique?

FUNDynamix uses CFRA’s proprietary granular ETF classifications, which goes well beyond traditional fund classifications frameworks. Users can analyze trends based on specific sectors, factors, and themes, more accurately reflecting the way investment professionals search, compare, and analyze ETFs today. Additionally, it provides valuable historical lookbacks, such as the ability to analyze historical holdings exposures for ETFs, which is difficult to do in other data platforms.

Is FUNDynamix independent?

Yes. CFRA is an independent research and insights firm that does not manage money and is not affiliated with any asset manager or broker-dealer. The FUNDynamix platform is not affiliated with any ETF or fund issuer, and provides users with the ability to access data, ratings, and analysis from a trusted, independent third-party source.

Technical Research Terms
What is CFRA's Technical Research?

CFRA’s Technical Research has been providing investors market analysis based solely on the law of supply and demand for more than 80 years.

Acquired by CFRA in 2021, Lowry Research has a time-tested, data-driven methodology that gives you factual and unbiased insight into the strength of markets, sectors, industries, and individual securities to help you generate alpha and reduce risk in any market environment.

How often is the system updated?

The statistics for Lowry OnDemand are updated nightly and ready to go by 7:00AM ET.

How can we set up a conference call with Lowry?

Firm-wide conference calls can be arranged either on an impromptu basis (with a one day lead time notice) or by arranging a regularly scheduled conference call, weekly or monthly, with your firm’s coordinator. Simply call us at 561-799-1889 and we will take it from there.

What are alerts?

Alerts are signals of potentially important changes in the way a stock is acting. By themselves, alerts do not necessarily serve as buy or sell signals but act more as warnings to be aware that a change in trend may be occurring. Daily Alerts are based on changes in Price and Power Ratings. Weekly Alerts are based on changes in Power Ratings.

Daily Alerts

  • Power Rating Above or Below the 150-Day Moving Average. Positive (Green Arrow) Alerts are triggered when prices move above a 150-Day Moving Average, Negative Alerts (Red Arrow) when prices move below a 150-Day Moving Average.
  • Power Rating Above or Below the 150-Day Moving Average. Signals are triggered on the same basis as Price Alerts.
  • Relative Strength moves above or below the Zero Line. Positive Alerts (Green Arrow) are triggered when the Power Rating Relative Strength (the histogram on the bottom of a Power Chart-for details see How to Read Lowry’s Power Charts) rises above the zero line.
  • Negative Alerts (Red Arrow ) are triggered when the Relative Strength Histogram drops below the zero line.
  • Short Term Trend (Buy/Sell) changes.

Weekly Alerts

  • Power Rating Moves Up or Down 15 points in one week. Positive Alerts (Green Arrow) are triggered when the Power Rating for a stock or index moves up 15 points in one week (5 trading days).
  • Negative Alerts (Red Arrow) are triggered when the Power Rating drops 15 points in one week. Power Rating rises or drops for three consecutive weeks.
  • A Positive Alert (Green Arrow) is triggered when the Power Rating for a stock or index rises for three consecutive weeks.
  • A Negative Alert (Red Arrow) is triggered when the Power Rating drops for three consecutive weeks.
    4-Week Power Rating Moving Average moves above or below the 30-Week Power Rating Moving Average. The 4-Week Moving Average moving Above/Below the 30-Week Moving Average can signal a longer term change in trend.
  • In general terms, a 15 point increase/decrease in a Power Rating signals a burst of buying/selling enthusiasm. As such the Alert can be particularly important when it occurs soon after a stock has made a top or bottom.
  • A move above or below its 150-Day Moving Average by a Power Rating can be important signal of a trend reversal. Many long-time Lowry clients regard the crossing of the 150-Day Moving Average by a Power Rating as a particularly advantageous time to enter a trade.
  • Three consecutive weeks of increase/decrease in Power Rating can be a particularly important signal in the early stages of a trend as it represents a consistent pattern of buying or selling.
  • Relative Strength of the Power Rating moving Above or Below Zero can be an important signal of a stock that is transitioning between outperforming and underperforming the market.
Is there a limit to the number of portfolios I can set up?

No. You may build as many portfolios as you like. A word, however, some portfolios are small enough not to warrant a stand-alone listing as you may choose to build a portfolio that house commonly owned stocks by your customers and therefore cut down on your list of stocks to watch and saves you time.

Can you explain the difference between the Major Sectors and Industry Groups?

In order to identify very broad areas of concentrated buying enthusiasm, or investors lethargy, we have divided the stock market into ten sectors ranked in order of Power Ratings, which is a complex form of relative strength. Examples of these broad based areas are the Energy Sector, Transportation Sector, Financial Sector, etc. Example: Energy Sectors has industry groups of gas pipelines, oil and gas producers, oil refinery and marketing which are also ranked by Power Ratings.

Should I just be looking at the colors to Buy-Green or Sell-Red, or is there more?

The color-coding is important for a quick answer and/or a glance down the page, but all the factors that go into the final decision should be reviewed. Comparing the fundamental information against the technical data is key. Checking the Power Ratings over the last few weeks and looking for alerts or Industry Group action all helps in making a complete opinion as well as enhancing your response and offering full disclosure to customers.

What is the basis for your Buy/Sell Ideas?

There will be 29 general categories that will appear most of the time. These are discussed briefly here and described in more detail above the table listing the equities in each category.

  • Strongest Big-Cap Stocks
  • Strongest Mid-Cap Stocks
  • Strongest Small-Cap Stocks
  • Weakest Big-Cap Stocks
  • Weakest Mid-Cap Stocks
  • Weakest Small-Cap Stocks
  • Strongest High Growth Stocks
  • Strongest High Yielding Stocks
  • Strongest High P/E Ratio Stocks
  • Weakest High P/E Ratio Stocks
  • Weakest Low Growth Stocks
  • Strongest Big-Cap Growth Stocks
  • Strongest Mid-Cap Growth Stocks
  • Strongest Small-Cap Growth Stocks
  • Strong Fundamentals/Strong Power Ratings
  • Strong Fundamentals/Weak Power Ratings
  • Weak Fundamentals/Strong Power Ratings
  • Weak Fundamentals/Weak Power Ratings
  • Strongest Momentum Stocks
  • Strongest Low Priced Stocks
  • Greatest Positive Price Trend Deviation
  • Greatest Negative Price Trend Deviation
  • Strongest High Yielding Stocks
  • Strongest High P/E Ratio Stocks
  • Strongest Low P/E Ratio Stocks
  • Strongest Low Price/Sales Ratio Stocks
  • Weakest High P/E Ratio Stocks
  • Weakest High Price/Sales Ratio Stocks
  • Strongest Big-Cap Value Stocks
  • Strongest Mid-Cap Value Stocks
Technical Research Ratings and Indices
What is the Buying Power Index?

The Buying Power Index is an intermediate and longer-term measurement of the effect buyers are producing (Demand), as evidenced by the GAINS and UPSIDE VOLUME registered by advancing stocks. This is a multiple time period index, which in its final construction, not only takes into account the number of stocks registering advances, but includes and evaluates such upside action both in terms of actual POINTS GAINED and related UPSIDE VOLUME. The average time period for the several components making up this index is approximately 50 trading days.

What is the Selling Pressure Index?

The Selling Pressure Index is our way of representing the force of supply. It is computed in the same manner as the Buying Power Index, but is constructed from the action of declining stocks in terms of POINTS LOST and DOWNSIDE VOLUME.

What is the Short Term Index and how do I use it?

The Short Term Buying Power Index is a short-term measurement of the effect of buying, computed in terms of percentages and is a relatively sensitive index calculated on a time period of less than one half the average time period used for the Buying Power Measurement (heavy black line). The principal use of this index is for pinpointing “oversold” areas which have often proved highly profitable for buying stocks.

What is a Power Rating and what does it measure?

The Power Rating reflects the present relative strength of each issue. The Power Rating Index is comprised of three separate components drawn from the daily trading action of each stock.

  • Pulsation: This measurement is computed from the number of times a stock registers gains or losses within a fixed period of time.
  • Trend: Comparing a stock’s individual action with the action of the market as a whole denotes whether that stock is acting stronger or weaker than the majority of stocks traded.
  • Percentage: The price movement of each stock, up or down, is calculated on a percentage basis in order to reduce all stocks to a comparative level.

These three components are combined into one index, which becomes the Power Rating for an individual stock. Regardless of the price or the volume of trading, the PR reduces the action of each stock to a relative and comparative basis.

What is a Velocity Rating and how is it calculated?

The Velocity Rating indicates the speed with which a stock is capable of moving either up or down. This index of volatility is developed from the price movement of a stock within a specific time period, and is recomputed at regular intervals. In theory, the Velocity Rating has a range of 0 to infinity; however, past experience has shown that this index normally ranges between 10 and 20. A high Velocity Rating does not necessarily mean that the stock will keep moving, but it does reflect its ability to move. The Velocity Rating, taken into consideration with the more important Power Rating (discussed earlier), often proves to be the determining factor in the matter of individual stock selection. For example, of two stocks reflecting equal strength, the stock with the higher Velocity Rating would usually deserve greater consideration.

What is the Earnings Growth Rate (EGR)?

EGR stands for Earnings Growth Ranking. Each week, we compile the most recent five quarters of reported earnings for each stock in our database. Then, for each stock, we calculate the ratio between the total earnings for the latest four quarters to the total earnings for the earliest four quarters. In this way, three quarters are overlapped, and the seasonal tendency of many quarterly reportings is eliminated. The ratio for each stock is then ranked against all other stocks in our database on a percentage basis on a scale of zero to 99. Those stocks with the highest earnings growth receive a 99 ranking, and stocks with the lowest earnings growth, or negative growth, receive a zero ranking.

What is the Price to Sales Ranking (PSR)?

PSR stands for Price to Sales Ranking. A number of important academic studies have determined that the Price/Sales Ratio is the most reliable method of identifying stocks for long term appreciation. Stocks with the lowest Price/Sales Ratio generally represent the greatest Values. To determine the Ranking, the Price/Sales Ratio is calculated each week by dividing the current weekly closing price by the total of the last four quarters of sales. Then, the ratios for all stocks are sorted on a percentage basis on a scale of zero to 99. Those stocks with the lowest Price/Sales Ratio receive a Price to Sales Ranking of 99, and stocks with the highest Price/Sales Ratio receive a Price to Sales Ranking of zero.

What is meant by the term Operating Companies Only (OCO)?

Lowry’s OCO indicators exclude all preferred issues, all real estate partnerships, all foreign issues and ADRs, and all closed-end stock and bond funds. The remaining issues are simply domestic common stocks listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Lowry’s OCO Adv-Dec Line has provided a far more accurate measurement of the internal strength of the stock market, particularly at critical turning points.

Public Policy Research
Who is Washington Analysis?

Acquired by CFRA in 2021, Washington Analysis is a top-rated independent institutional research firm specializing in identifying risks and opportunities across asset-classes emanating from courts, Congress, and regulators, at both the state and federal levels. Founded in 1973, personnel at WA have been with the firm for an average of at least ten years. This stability among the research staff is complemented by a unique institutional expertise in our niche coverage areas, with many WA professionals possessing relevant career experience on both Capitol Hill and Wall Street.

What Sectors does Washington Analysis cover?

Washington Analysis covers:

  • Aerospace & Defense
  • Energy
  • Financial Services and Housing Policy
  • Geopolitical
  • Healthcare
  • Politics and Legislation
  • Telecommunications, Media, Internet & Technology
  • Special Situations