Is Franklin U.S. Large Cap Multifactor Index ETF (FLQL) a Strong ETF Right Now?

The Franklin U.S. Large Cap Multifactor Index ETF (FLQL) was launched on 04/26/2017, and is a smart beta exchange traded fund designed to offer broad exposure to the Style Box - Large Cap Blend category of the market.

What Are Smart Beta ETFs?

The ETF industry has long been dominated by products based on market cap weighted indexes, a strategy created to reflect the market or a particular market segment.

Investors who believe in market efficiency should consider market cap indexes, as they replicate market returns in a low-cost, convenient, and transparent way.

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.

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.

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

Because the fund has amassed over $1.29 billion, this makes it one of the larger ETFs in the Style Box - Large Cap Blend. FLQL is managed by Franklin Templeton Investments. Before fees and expenses, this particular fund seeks to match the performance of the LibertyQ US Large Cap Equity Index.

The LibertyQ US Large Cap Equity Index seeks to achieve a lower level of risk and higher risk-adjusted performance than the Russell 1000 Index over the long term by applying a multi-factor selection process, which is designed to select equity securities from the Russell 1000 Index that have favorable exposure to four investment style factors quality, value, momentum and low volatility.

Cost & Other Expenses

For ETF investors, expense ratios are an important factor when considering a fund's return; in the long-term, cheaper funds actually have the ability to outperform their more expensive cousins if all other things remain the same.

Annual operating expenses for this ETF are 0.15%, making it one of the cheaper products in the space.

It has a 12-month trailing dividend yield of 1.28%.

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.

Representing 34.40% of the portfolio, the fund has heaviest allocation to the Information Technology sector; Healthcare and Consumer Discretionary round out the top three.

Looking at individual holdings, Apple Inc (AAPL) accounts for about 7.59% of total assets, followed by Microsoft Corp (MSFT) and Amazon.com Inc (AMZN).

FLQL's top 10 holdings account for about 30.15% of its total assets under management.

Performance and Risk

The ETF has gained about 11.75% and was up about 34.34% so far this year and in the past one year (as of 03/28/2024), respectively. FLQL has traded between $40.53 and $53.26 during this last 52-week period.

The ETF has a beta of 0.92 and standard deviation of 15.62% for the trailing three-year period. With about 211 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.

Alternatives

Franklin U.S. Large Cap Multifactor Index ETF is a reasonable option for investors seeking to outperform the Style Box - Large Cap Blend segment of the market. However, there are other ETFs in the space which investors could consider.

IShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV) tracks S&P 500 Index and the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) tracks S&P 500 Index. IShares Core S&P 500 ETF has $451.46 billion in assets, SPDR S&P 500 ETF has $526.63 billion. IVV has an expense ratio of 0.03% and SPY charges 0.09%.

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 Blend.

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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Franklin U.S. Large Cap Multifactor Index ETF (FLQL): ETF Research Reports

Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Apple Inc. (AAPL) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) : Free Stock Analysis Report

SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY): ETF Research Reports

iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV): ETF Research Reports

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Zacks Investment Research

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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