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Is iShares MSCI USA Equal Weighted ETF (EUSA) a Strong ETF Right Now?

Sweta Killa

A smart beta exchange traded fund, the iShares MSCI USA Equal Weighted ETF (EUSA) debuted on 05/05/2010, and offers broad exposure to the Style Box - All Cap Blend category of the market.

What Are Smart Beta ETFs?

For a long time now, the ETF industry has been flooded with products based on market capitalization weighted indexes, which are designed to represent the broader market or a particular market segment.

Investors who believe in market efficiency should consider market cap indexes, as they replicate market returns in a low-cost, convenient, and transparent way.

There are some investors, though, who think it's possible to beat the market with great stock selection; this group likely invests in another class of funds known as smart beta, which track non-cap weighted strategies.

Based on specific fundamental characteristics, or a combination of such, these indexes attempt to pick stocks that have a better chance of risk-return performance.

While this space offers a number of choices to investors, including simplest equal-weighting, fundamental weighting and volatility/momentum based weighting methodologies, not all these strategies have been able to deliver superior results.

Fund Sponsor & Index

Managed by Blackrock, EUSA has amassed assets over $283.62 M, making it one of the average sized ETFs in the Style Box - All Cap Blend. This particular fund, before fees and expenses, seeks to match the performance of the MSCI USA Equal Weighted Index.

The MSCI USA Equal Weighted Index represents the MSCI USA Index, measures the performance of equity securities in the top 85% by market capitalization of equity securities listed on stock exchanges in the United States.

Cost & Other Expenses

When considering an ETF's total return, expense ratios are an important factor. And, cheaper funds can significantly outperform their more expensive cousins in the long term if all other factors remain equal.

Operating expenses on an annual basis are 0.15% for EUSA, making it one of the cheaper products in the space.

EUSA's 12-month trailing dividend yield is 1.69%.

Sector Exposure and Top Holdings

While ETFs offer diversified exposure, which minimizes single stock risk, a deep look into a fund's holdings is a valuable exercise. And, most ETFs are very transparent products that disclose their holdings on a daily basis.

EUSA's heaviest allocation is in the Information Technology sector, which is about 16.20% of the portfolio. Its Financials and Industrials round out the top three.

When you look at individual holdings, Tableau Software Inc Class A (DATA) accounts for about 0.21% of the fund's total assets, followed by Snap Inc Class A (SNAP) and Total System Services Inc (TSS).

The top 10 holdings account for about 1.91% of total assets under management.

Performance and Risk

The ETF has added about 20.81% so far this year and was up about 7.94% in the last one year (as of 07/03/2019). In the past 52-week period, it has traded between $47.02 and $59.92.

The fund has a beta of 1.06 and standard deviation of 11.87% for the trailing three-year period, which makes EUSA a medium risk choice in this particular space. With about 645 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.

Alternatives

IShares MSCI USA Equal Weighted ETF is a reasonable option for investors seeking to outperform the Style Box - All Cap Blend segment of the market. However, there are other ETFs in the space which investors could consider.

IShares Core S&P Total U.S. Stock Market ETF (ITOT) tracks S&P Total Market Index and the Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (VTI) tracks CRSP US Total Market Index. IShares Core S&P Total U.S. Stock Market ETF has $21.48 B in assets, Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF has $117.33 B. ITOT has an expense ratio of 0.03% and VTI charges 0.03%.

Investors looking for cheaper and lower-risk options should consider traditional market cap weighted ETFs that aim to match the returns of the Style Box - All Cap Blend.

Bottom Line

To learn more about this product and other ETFs, screen for products that match your investment objectives and read articles on latest developments in the ETF investing universe, please visit Zacks ETF Center.


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iShares MSCI USA Equal Weighted ETF (EUSA): ETF Research Reports
 
Snap Inc. (SNAP) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Tableau Software, Inc. (DATA) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (VTI): ETF Research Reports
 
iShares Core S&P Total U.S. Stock Market ETF (ITOT): ETF Research Reports
 
Total System Services, Inc. (TSS) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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