Alpha Vs Beta: What’s the Difference?


For evaluating the overall performance of a stock, a fund, or an investment portfolio manager, Alpha and beta are the two most important measurements. The amount of funding is measured by alpha that the funding has again in comparison to the marketplace index or the other broad benchmark that is compared in opposition to.

Whereas beta measures the volatility of an investment and its far an indication of its relative threat. As you know, both alpha and beta stands on the platform of standard calculations. Both of them important uses to calculate on investment portfolio’s returns, in relation to R-Squared, Standard Deviation, Sharpe Ratio Definition. Each alpha and beta are historical measures

Standard Variation

A standard deviation is a statistical measurement of a dataset’s dispersion in relation to its mean and is measured as its square root of the variance. By measuring the difference between each data point relative to the mean, the standard deviation is measured as the square root of variance. If there is a greater variance within the data set where the data points go farther than the mean hence, the more the data is distributed, the greater the standard deviation. The standard deviation calculates the dispersion relative to its mean of a dataset. The variance from stable blue-chip stocks is typically reasonably mild, while the volatility stock exists in high standards. The default is that, even if it is for the investor — for example, above average returns — this default measures all the vulnerability as danger.


The ratio of variance to the dependent variable, described by an independent variable or variables, for a regression model, to R-Squared (R2) is a statistical measure. Whereas the relationship between an independent and dependent variable is based on the intensity of the connection, R-squared describes how the variance of one variable explains the variance of the second variable. If therefore the R2 of a model is 0.50, then the inputs of the model will explain approximately half the variance observed.


R-squared = 1 – (Unexplained Variation/Total Variation value)

Shape Ratio Definition

Investors should understand the return on the investment as opposed to their risk. Nobel Laureate William F. Sharpe created the Sharp ratio, which is the average return obtained above the risk-free rate per unit of uncertainty and overall risk. The price variation in an asset or portfolio managers is measured by volatility. The removal of the risk-free rate from the middle return helps an investor to separate benefit from risk-taking activities better. Return on an investment with a zero-risk is the risk-free rate, which means that investors can expect to return without taking any risk. As risk-free prices, for example, the return on a US Treasury bond could be used.

The more the Sharpe ratio value, more the risk-adjusted return is generally appealing.

Formula: (Return of Portfolio) – (Risk-free Rate) by (Standard Deviation Portfolio’s excess return)


The alpha determines for an inventory is represented as a single variety, like three or five. But the number virtually indicates the share above or under a benchmark index that the stock price or fund price reached. In this case, the inventory or fund did 3% better and five% worse than the index respectively.

Key points:

  • Alpha indicates how good (or bad) a stock was compared with a benchmark index.
  • Beta shows the volatility of stock prices compared with the entire economy.
  • Always a great alpha is fine.
  • An investor in growth stocks, but shunned by investors who look for steady returns and less risk, may prefer a high beta.
  • An alpha of 1.0 means that the investment exceeds the 1 percent benchmark index. An alpha of -1.0 means that the investment has less than 1 percent of its benchmark index. The return of Alpha is equal to the benchmark if it is zero.

Note, alpha is a number of histories. It’s helpful to track an alpha stock for a while, but you don’t know how it’s going to work tomorrow.

Alpha Portfolio Management

Alpha contributes to explaining to individual investors how the securities or funds can be generated in relation to their peers or to the entire market. Trained online portfolio managers measure alpha as the return rate which exceeds or falls short of the prediction of the model. They use a model of capital asset pricing (CAPM) for estimating the future returns of a portfolio of investments.

This is usually a higher bar. If the CAPM analysis showed the portfolio would have won 5% based on risk, economic conditions and other variables but only 3%, the alpha of the portfolio would have been discouraging -2%.

Alpha Formulas

Alpha = (End price+ DPS – Start Price) / Start Price

*DPS = Distribution per share

Portfolio managers aim for a higher degree of risk by broadening their portfolios.

*IMP: Alpha and beta are past performance measures.

Alpha is the value that a portfolio manager adds to or removes from the return of a fund because it represents the performance of a portfolio relative to a benchmark. The basis number for alpha is zero, indicating that the portfolio or fund tracks the benchmark index exactly. In this scenario, neither contributed nor lost any value to the investment manager.


Beta, which is often called beta coefficient, indicates the volatility, compared with the whole market, of a stock, fund or stock portfolio. Identity can help an investor decide the risk of whether the price of a stock is volatile.

The baseline for beta is one that shows that the security price is moving just as the market is moving. A beta of less than 1 is less volatile than the market while a beta of less than 1 is a less volatile price than the market. Where the stock’s beta is 1.5, 50 percent more volatile than the overall market is consider.

Beta is also a historic number like alpha.


The betas for three common stocks at the time of writing are:

Micron Technology Inc. (MU)1.26
Coca-Cola Company (KO)0.37
Apple Inc. (AAPL):  0.99

We see Micron being 26% more volatile than the entire market, while Coca-Cola is 37% more volatile than the market, and Apple more market-compatible, or 0.01% less volatile, as compared to the market. Betas that are appropriate differ between firms and industries. Many utilities have a beta of below 1, while many Nasdaq high-tech inventories have a beta of below 1. This suggests, for investors, that technical inventories give greater returns, usually face more risks, while utility inventories are constantly earning.

Although a positive alpha is often desirable better than a negative alpha, beta is not well defined. Risk-investors including pensioners in search of a stable income are drawn to a lower beta. Risk prone investors seeking better returns are also prepared to invest in higher beta inventories.

Beta Formulas:

Here is a useful formula for calculating beta:

Beta = CR/Variance of Market’s Return

*Beta=Variance of Market’s Return CR

*CR=Covariance of asset’s return with market’s return Covariance is used to calculate the market movement association between both inventories. A positive covariance means that the stocks are locked in, while a negative covariance means that they shift in the other direction and variance refers to the distance that a stock travels from its mean. The volatility of stock price over time is often measured.