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Is First Trust Rising Dividend Achievers ETF (RDVY) a Strong ETF Right Now?

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A smart beta exchange traded fund, the First Trust Rising Dividend Achievers ETF (RDVY - Free Report) debuted on 01/07/2014, and offers broad exposure to the Style Box - Large Cap Value 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.

Market cap weighted indexes offer a low-cost, convenient, and transparent way of replicating market returns, and are a good option 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.

This kind of index follows this same mindset, as it attempts to pick stocks that have better chances of risk-return performance; non-cap weighted strategies base selection on certain fundamental characteristics, or a mix of such characteristics.

This area offers many different investment choices, such as simplest equal-weighting, fundamental weighting and volatility/momentum based weighting methodologies; however, not all of these strategies can deliver superior results.

Fund Sponsor & Index

RDVY is managed by First Trust Advisors, and this fund has amassed over $8.32 billion, which makes it one of the larger ETFs in the Style Box - Large Cap Value. This particular fund, before fees and expenses, seeks to match the performance of the NASDAQ US Rising Dividend Achievers Index.

The NASDAQ US Rising Dividend Achievers Index is designed to provide access to a diversified portfolio of companies with a history of paying dividends.

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 0.50% for RDVY, making it on par with most peer products in the space.

RDVY's 12-month trailing dividend yield is 1.58%.

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.

RDVY's heaviest allocation is in the Financials sector, which is about 36.40% of the portfolio. Its Information Technology and Healthcare round out the top three.

Looking at individual holdings, Pultegroup, Inc. (PHM - Free Report) accounts for about 2.13% of total assets, followed by Pfizer Inc. (PFE - Free Report) and Unitedhealth Group Incorporated (UNH - Free Report) .

RDVY's top 10 holdings account for about 20.83% of its total assets under management.

Performance and Risk

So far this year, RDVY has lost about -17.30%, and is down about -9.59% in the last one year (as of 07/27/2022). During this past 52-week period, the fund has traded between $40.42 and $52.79.

The fund has a beta of 1.15 and standard deviation of 28.87% for the trailing three-year period, which makes RDVY a medium risk choice in this particular space. With about 51 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.


First Trust Rising Dividend Achievers ETF is an excellent option for investors seeking to outperform the Style Box - Large Cap Value segment of the market. There are other ETFs in the space which investors could consider as well.

IShares Russell 1000 Value ETF (IWD - Free Report) tracks Russell 1000 Value Index and the Vanguard Value ETF (VTV - Free Report) tracks CRSP U.S. Large Cap Value Index. IShares Russell 1000 Value ETF has $51.81 billion in assets, Vanguard Value ETF has $95.55 billion. IWD has an expense ratio of 0.19% and VTV charges 0.04%.

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 - Large Cap Value.

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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