Designed to provide broad exposure to the Broad Developed World ETFs category of the market, the First Trust Dow Jones Global Select Dividend ETF (
FGD Quick Quote FGD - Free Report) is a smart beta exchange traded fund launched on 11/21/2007. 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.
A good option for investors who believe in market efficiency, market cap weighted indexes offer a low-cost, convenient, and transparent way of replicating market returns.
But, there are some investors who would rather invest in smart beta funds; these funds track non-cap weighted strategies, and are a strong option for those who prefer choosing great stocks in order to beat the market.
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.
Even though this space provides many choices to investors--think one of the simplest methodologies like equal-weighting and more complicated ones like fundamental and volatility/momentum based weighting--not all have been able to deliver first-rate results.
Fund Sponsor & Index
Because the fund has amassed over $569.32 million, this makes it one of the average sized ETFs in the Broad Developed World ETFs. FGD is managed by First Trust Advisors. This particular fund, before fees and expenses, seeks to match the performance of the Dow Jones Global Select Dividend Index.
The Dow Jones Global Select Dividend Index is an indicated annual dividend yield weighted index of 100 stocks selected from the developed-market portion of the Dow Jones World Index.
Cost & Other Expenses
Investors should also pay attention to an ETF's expense ratio. Lower cost products will produce better results than those with a higher cost, assuming all other metrics remain the same.
Annual operating expenses for this ETF are 0.57%, making it on par with most peer products in the space.
The fund has a 12-month trailing dividend yield of 6.38%.
Sector Exposure and Top Holdings
ETFs offer diversified exposure and thus minimize single stock risk, but it is still important to delve into a fund's holdings before investing. Most ETFs are very transparent products and many disclose their holdings on a daily basis.
Looking at individual holdings, Fortescue Metals Group Limited (FMG.AU) accounts for about 2.57% of total assets, followed by A.p. Moeller - Maersk A/s (class A) (MAERSKA.DC) and Lumen Technologies Inc. (
LUMN Quick Quote LUMN - Free Report) .
Its top 10 holdings account for approximately 16.43% of FGD's total assets under management.
Performance and Risk
Year-to-date, the First Trust Dow Jones Global Select Dividend ETF has lost about -12.69% so far, and is down about -11.32% over the last 12 months (as of 08/29/2022). FGD has traded between $20.60 and $26.73 in this past 52-week period.
The ETF has a beta of 0.92 and standard deviation of 25.69% for the trailing three-year period, making it a low risk choice in the space. With about 101 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.
First Trust Dow Jones Global Select Dividend ETF is a reasonable option for investors seeking to outperform the Broad Developed World ETFs segment of the market. However, there are other ETFs in the space which investors could consider.
IShares MSCI ACWI ETF (
ACWI Quick Quote ACWI - Free Report) tracks MSCI All Country World Index and the Vanguard Total World Stock ETF ( VT Quick Quote VT - Free Report) tracks FTSE Global All Cap Index. IShares MSCI ACWI ETF has $17.77 billion in assets, Vanguard Total World Stock ETF has $23.09 billion. ACWI has an expense ratio of 0.32% and VT charges 0.07%.
Investors looking for cheaper and lower-risk options should consider traditional market cap weighted ETFs that aim to match the returns of the Broad Developed World ETFs.
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.