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

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The iShares MSCI USA Equal Weighted ETF (EUSA - Free Report) was launched on 05/05/2010, and is a smart beta exchange traded fund designed to offer broad exposure to the Style Box - All Cap Blend category of the market.

What Are Smart Beta ETFs?

The ETF industry has traditionally been dominated by products based on market capitalization weighted indexes that are designed to represent the market or a particular segment of the market.

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

However, some investors believe in the possibility of beating the market through exceptional stock selection, and choose a different type of fund that tracks non-cap weighted strategies: smart beta.

By attempting to pick stocks that have a better chance of risk-return performance, non-cap weighted indexes are based on certain fundamental characteristics, or a combination of such.

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

Because the fund has amassed over $386.74 million, this makes it one of the average sized ETFs in the Style Box - All Cap Blend. EUSA is managed by Blackrock. EUSA, 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

Expense ratios are an important factor in the return of an ETF and in the long-term, cheaper funds can significantly outperform their more expensive cousins, other things remaining the same.

Operating expenses on an annual basis are 0.15% for this ETF, which makes it one of the cheaper products in the space.

It has a 12-month trailing dividend yield of 1.18%.

Sector Exposure and Top Holdings

It is important to delve into an ETF's holdings before investing despite the many upsides to these kinds of funds like diversified exposure, which minimizes single stock risk. And, most ETFs are very transparent products that disclose their holdings on a daily basis.

This ETF has heaviest allocation in the Information Technology sector - about 18.50% of the portfolio. Financials and Industrials round out the top three.

When you look at individual holdings, Conocophillips (COP - Free Report) accounts for about 0.38% of the fund's total assets, followed by Occidental Petroleum Corp (OXY - Free Report) and Viacomcbs Inc Class B (VIAC - Free Report) .

Its top 10 holdings account for approximately 2.76% of EUSA's total assets under management.

Performance and Risk

The ETF return is roughly 12.57% and is up about 68.06% so far this year and in the past one year (as of 04/08/2021), respectively. EUSA has traded between $49.26 and $80.06 during this last 52-week period.

The ETF has a beta of 1.14 and standard deviation of 23.74% for the trailing three-year period, making it a medium risk choice in the space. With about 625 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.

Alternatives

IShares MSCI USA Equal Weighted ETF is an excellent option for investors seeking to outperform the Style Box - All Cap Blend segment of the market. There are other ETFs in the space which investors could consider as well.

IShares Core S&P Total U.S. Stock Market ETF (ITOT - Free Report) tracks S&P Total Market Index and the Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (VTI - Free Report) tracks CRSP US Total Market Index. IShares Core S&P Total U.S. Stock Market ETF has $37.11 billion in assets, Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF has $225.21 billion. 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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