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Should First Trust Capital Strength ETF (FTCS) Be on Your Investing Radar?

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If you're interested in broad exposure to the Large Cap Blend segment of the US equity market, look no further than the First Trust Capital Strength ETF (FTCS), a passively managed exchange traded fund launched on 07/06/2006.

The fund is sponsored by First Trust Advisors. It has amassed assets over $3.57 B, making it one of the larger ETFs attempting to match the Large Cap Blend segment of the US equity market.

Why Large Cap Blend

Large cap companies usually have a market capitalization above $10 billion. They tend to be stable companies with predictable cash flows and are usually less volatile than mid and small cap companies.

Blend ETFs usually hold a mix of growth and value stocks as well as stocks that exhibit both value and growth characteristics.

Costs

When considering an ETF's total return, expense ratios are an important factor, and cheaper funds can significantly outperform their more expensive counterparts in the long term if all other factors remain equal.

Annual operating expenses for this ETF are 0.60%, putting it on par with most peer products in the space.

It has a 12-month trailing dividend yield of 1.22%.

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.

This ETF has heaviest allocation to the Healthcare sector--about 20.70% of the portfolio. Industrials and Information Technology round out the top three.

Looking at individual holdings, Eli Lilly And Company (LLY) accounts for about 2.27% of total assets, followed by Unitedhealth Group Incorporated (UNH) and Amgen Inc. (AMGN - Free Report) .

The top 10 holdings account for about 21.73% of total assets under management.

Performance and Risk

FTCS seeks to match the performance of the The Capital Strength Index before fees and expenses. The Capital Strength Index is an equal-dollar weighted index which provides exposure to well-capitalized companies with strong market positions based on strong balance sheets, high degree of liquidity, ability to generate earnings growth & record financial strength & profit growth.

The ETF has added roughly 2.75% so far this year and is up about 24.09% in the last one year (as of 01/22/2020). In the past 52-week period, it has traded between $49.96 and $62.06.

The ETF has a beta of 0.89 and standard deviation of 12.51% for the trailing three-year period, making it a medium risk choice in the space. With about 51 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.

Alternatives

First Trust Capital Strength 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, FTCS is a good option for those seeking exposure to the Style Box - Large Cap Blend area of the market. Investors might also want to consider some other ETF options in the space.

The iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV) and the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) track a similar index. While iShares Core S&P 500 ETF has $207.62 B in assets, SPDR S&P 500 ETF has $318.43 B. IVV has an expense ratio of 0.04% and SPY charges 0.09%.

Bottom-Line

Retail and institutional investors increasingly turn to passively managed ETFs because they offer low costs, transparency, flexibility, and tax efficiency; these kind of funds are also excellent vehicles for long term investors.

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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