Making its debut on 10/21/2015, smart beta exchange traded fund SPDR Portfolio S&P 500 High Dividend ETF (SPYD) provides investors broad exposure to the Large Cap ETFs category of the U.S. equity 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.
Market cap weighted indexes offer a low-cost, convenient, and transparent way of replicating market returns, and are a good option for investors who believe in market efficiency.
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.
This kind of index follows this same mindset, as it attempts to pick stocks that have better chances of risk-return performance; non-cap weighted strategies base selection on certain fundamental characteristics, or a mix of such characteristics.
Methodologies like equal-weighting, one of the simplest options out there, fundamental weighting, and volatility/momentum based weighting are all choices offered to investors in this space, but not all of them can deliver superior returns.
Fund Sponsor & Index
SPYD is managed by State Street Global Advisors, and this fund has amassed over $495.12 M, which makes it one of the average sized ETFs in the Large Cap ETFs. This particular fund, before fees and expenses, seeks to match the performance of the S&P 500 High Dividend Index.
The S&P 500 High Dividend Index is designed to measure the performance of the top 80 dividend-paying securities listed on the S&P 500 Index, based on dividend yield.
Cost & Other Expenses
Expense ratios are an important factor in the return of an ETF and in the long-term, cheaper funds can significantly outperform their more expensive cousins, other things remaining the same.
Annual operating expenses for this ETF are 0.07%, making it one of the least expensive products in the space.
It has a 12-month trailing dividend yield of 4.02%.
Sector Exposure and Top Holdings
It is important to delve into an ETF's holdings before investing despite the many upsides to these kinds of funds like diversified exposure, which minimizes single stock risk. And, most ETFs are very transparent products that disclose their holdings on a daily basis.
This ETF has heaviest allocation in the Real Estate sector - about 24.80% of the portfolio. Utilities and Consumer Discretionary round out the top three.
Taking into account individual holdings, Valero Energy Corporation (VLO) accounts for about 1.50% of the fund's total assets, followed by Macy's Inc (M) and Aes Corporation (AES).
Its top 10 holdings account for approximately 14.36% of SPYD's total assets under management.
Performance and Risk
So far this year, the ETF has lost about -2.57%, and is up roughly 9.73% in the last one year (as of 05/21/2018). SPYD has traded between $34.68 and $38.74 in the past 52-week period.
The ETF has a beta of 0.77 and standard deviation of 12.20% for the trailing three-year period, making it a medium choice in the space. With about 82 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.
SPDR Portfolio S&P 500 High Dividend ETF is a reasonable option for investors seeking to outperform the Large Cap ETFs segment of the market. However, there are other ETFs in the space which investors could consider.
IShares Russell 1000 Value ETF (IWD) tracks Russell 1000 Value Index and the Vanguard Value ETF (VTV) tracks CRSP U.S. Large Cap Value Index. IShares Russell 1000 Value ETF has $36.53 B in assets, Vanguard Value ETF has $36.14 B. IWD has an expense ratio of 0.20% and VTV charges 0.05%.
Investors looking for cheaper and lower-risk options should consider traditional market cap weighted ETFs that aim to match the returns of the Large Cap 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 .
The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.