Back to top

Image: Bigstock

Should iShares Morningstar Small-Cap ETF (ISCB) Be on Your Investing Radar?

Read MoreHide Full Article

The iShares Morningstar Small-Cap ETF (ISCB - Free Report) was launched on 06/28/2004, and is a passively managed exchange traded fund designed to offer broad exposure to the Small Cap Blend segment of the US equity market.

The fund is sponsored by Blackrock. It has amassed assets over $205.38 million, making it one of the average sized ETFs attempting to match the Small Cap Blend segment of the US equity market.

Why Small Cap Blend

With more potential comes more risk, and small cap companies, with market capitalization below $2 billion, epitomizes this way of thinking.

Blend ETFs are aptly named, since they tend to hold a mix of growth and value stocks, as well as show characteristics of both kinds of equities.


Cost is an important factor in selecting the right ETF, and cheaper funds can significantly outperform their more expensive counterparts if all other fundamentals are the same.

Annual operating expenses for this ETF are 0.04%, making it one of the least expensive products in the space.

It has a 12-month trailing dividend yield of 1.65%.

Sector Exposure and Top Holdings

Even though ETFs offer diversified exposure which minimizes single stock risk, it is still important to look into a fund's holdings before investing. Luckily, most ETFs are very transparent products that disclose their holdings on a daily basis.

This ETF has heaviest allocation to the Industrials sector--about 18.90% of the portfolio. Financials and Consumer Discretionary round out the top three.

Looking at individual holdings, Vertiv Holdings Class A (VRT - Free Report) accounts for about 0.40% of total assets, followed by Super Micro Computer Inc (SMCI - Free Report) and Saia Inc (SAIA - Free Report) .

The top 10 holdings account for about 2.89% of total assets under management.

Performance and Risk

ISCB seeks to match the performance of the MORNINGSTAR US SMALL CAP EXTENDED INDEX before fees and expenses. The Morningstar US Small Cap Extended Index comprises of small-capitalization U.S. equities.

The ETF return is roughly 10.19% so far this year and is up about 3.67% in the last one year (as of 12/04/2023). In the past 52-week period, it has traded between $43.13 and $52.57.

The ETF has a beta of 1.17 and standard deviation of 22.16% for the trailing three-year period. With about 1732 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.


IShares Morningstar Small-Cap ETF carries a Zacks ETF Rank of 3 (Hold), which is based on expected asset class return, expense ratio, and momentum, among other factors. Thus, ISCB is a good option for those seeking exposure to the Style Box - Small Cap Blend area of the market. Investors might also want to consider some other ETF options in the space.

The iShares Russell 2000 ETF (IWM - Free Report) and the iShares Core S&P Small-Cap ETF (IJR - Free Report) track a similar index. While iShares Russell 2000 ETF has $55.25 billion in assets, iShares Core S&P Small-Cap ETF has $69.63 billion. IWM has an expense ratio of 0.19% and IJR charges 0.06%.


While an excellent vehicle for long term investors, passively managed ETFs are a popular choice among institutional and retail investors due to their low costs, transparency, flexibility, and tax efficiency.

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.

Published in