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Is SPDRSP TRANSPT (XTN) a Strong ETF Right Now?

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The SPDRSP TRANSPT (XTN - Free Report) was launched on 01/26/2011, and is a smart beta exchange traded fund designed to offer broad exposure to the Industrials ETFs category of the market.

What Are Smart Beta ETFs?

Market cap weighted indexes were created to reflect the market, or a specific segment of the market, and the ETF industry has traditionally been dominated by products based on this strategy.

Because market cap weighted indexes provide a low-cost, convenient, and transparent way of replicating market returns, they work well for investors who believe in market efficiency.

If you're the kind of investor who would rather try and beat the market through good stock selection, then smart beta funds are your best choice; this fund class is known for tracking non-cap weighted strategies.

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

Managed by State Street Global Advisors, XTN has amassed assets over $909.79 million, making it one of the average sized ETFs in the Industrials ETFs. XTN seeks to match the performance of the S&P Transportation Select Industry Index before fees and expenses.

This Index is one of nineteen S&P Select Industry Indices, each designed to measure the performance of a narrow sub-industry or group of sub-industries as defined by the GICS. Companies in the Select Industry Indices are classified based primarily on revenues; however, earnings and market perception are also considered. The Transportation Index is a modified equal weight index.

Cost & Other Expenses

Since cheaper funds tend to produce better results than more expensive funds, assuming all other factors remain equal, it is important for investors to pay attention to an ETF's expense ratio.

Operating expenses on an annual basis are 0.35% for XTN, making it one of the least expensive products in the space.

XTN's 12-month trailing dividend yield is 1.08%.

Sector Exposure and Top Holdings

Most ETFs are very transparent products, and disclose their holdings on a daily basis. ETFs also offer diversified exposure, which minimizes single stock risk, though it's still important for investors to research a fund's holdings.

This ETF has heaviest allocation in the Industrials sector - about 100% of the portfolio.

When you look at individual holdings, Avis Budget Group Inc. (CAR - Free Report) accounts for about 4.05% of the fund's total assets, followed by Arcbest Corporation (ARCB - Free Report) and Saia Inc. (SAIA - Free Report) .

The top 10 holdings account for about 26.53% of total assets under management.

Performance and Risk

The ETF has gained about 40.93% and is up about 53.11% so far this year and in the past one year (as of 11/15/2021), respectively. XTN has traded between $67.49 and $98.74 during this last 52-week period.

XTN has a beta of 1.33 and standard deviation of 29.79% for the trailing three-year period, which makes the fund a high risk choice in the space. With about 50 holdings, it has more concentrated exposure than peers.


SPDRSP TRANSPT is an excellent option for investors seeking to outperform the Industrials ETFs segment of the market. There are other ETFs in the space which investors could consider as well.

ISHARSTRAN AVG (IYT - Free Report) tracks Dow Jones Transportation Average Index and the US GLOBAL JETS (JETS - Free Report) tracks U.S. Global Jets Index. ISHARSTRAN AVG has $1.88 billion in assets, US GLOBAL JETS has $3.89 billion. IYT has an expense ratio of 0.41% and JETS charges 0.60%.

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

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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