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If the Trump Trade Falters, Where Should Investors Look for Profits Instead?

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  • (0:40) - Is There Value In International Markets?
  • (2:50) - Developed vs. Emerging Markets, Brexit and Currency Hedging
  • (5:05) - How Does Hartford Evaluate Stocks?
  • (8:40) - RODM Fund Breakdown
  • (14:45) - Risk/Return Profile for RODM
  • (16:15) - How does this fund fit into an investors portfolio?
  • (17:50) - Episode Round up
  • Podcast@Zacks.com

With Donald Trump in the White House and hopes for America-focused growth initiatives, many investors have been laser-focused on the domestic equity market in recent months. However, as of late, the trading has begun to shift a little bit, and we have started to see international markets outperform domestic funds like SPY as hopes for a robust pro-growth agenda have fallen by the wayside.

In order to understand why international equities have picked up the slack and if these trends can continue, I spoke with Darek Wojnar, the Head of ETFs at Hartford Funds, for some insights on this important topic in the latest edition of the Dutram Report. The interview runs the gambit of key issues facing international markets today, including worries over the strong dollar—though the currency, as represented by UUP, has been sliding as of late—Brexit, and if there are values in the foreign market world relative to the run-up we have seen in American shares.

Darek and I also take a closer look at what is going on in developed markets vs. emerging ones, and if investors should be focused on one area over another. In Darek’s view, developed markets outside of the U.S. offer some compelling values these days, and we can see that they are trading at a discount to historical averages too, potentially making them solid choices for investors right now.

We also discuss their fund that targets developed markets outside of the U.S., the Hartford Multifactor Developed Markets (exUS) ETF (RODM). This fund doesn’t just invest in stocks based on their market cap, as it evaluates stocks based on a number of factors including value, momentum, and quality. Additionally, the product puts a bit less into multinational securities, so this can help the portfolio be a bit more spread out than some of its peers.

We discuss what some of these shifts mean for investors and the portfolio of RODM, and how this might set it apart from other funds targeting the developed market or ex-U.S. market, such as Vanguard’s VEU or VEA, or iShares’ ACWX or EFA. Either way though, the international markets have been able to outperform their domestic counterparts in recent trading, and they may be due for some attention, especially among investors growing wary of a continued Trump rally.

Bottom Line

So, should investors be giving a closer look to international markets right now? Are better values to be had outside of the United States equity markets these days? Listen to this edition of the Dutram Report and be the judge yourself. And make sure to write us in at podcast @ zacks.com or find me on twitter @EricDutram to let me know what you think of this interview, and international investing these days as well.

But for more news and discussion regarding the world of ETFs, make sure to be on the lookout for the next edition of the Dutram Report, and check out the many other great Zacks podcasts as well!

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