ETF Spotlight on iShares MSCI Canada (NYSEArca: EWC), part of a weekly series. Assets: $2.9 billion

Objective: Seeks to track the MSCI Canada index, minus fees and expenses

Holdings: Royal Bank of Canada (NYSE: RY), Toronto Dominion Bank (NYSE: TD), and Suncor Energy (NYSE: SU) round out the fund’s top holdings; the financial sector makes up 34% of EWC; energy is 26.7% and materials are 18.3%.

What You Should Know

  • This is the only Canada-focused ETF available
  • It has 100 holdings
  • The expense ratio is 0.55%
  • EWC was up 51% last year, and is up 85.8% since the market’s March 9 low

The Latest News

  • Like most developed markets, Canada has not been immune to the global economic crisis. The country’s banks emerged from the fiasco relatively unscathed, but they face a new round of potential problems: consumers could have trouble meeting their debt obligations, which may strain the banks. [5 Reasons 2010 Looks Promising for Canada.]
  • The country has a strong track record of balanced budgets, and its latest one will be unveiled on March 4. Canada’s bonds are rallying as a result, says BusinessWeek.
  • In  a Re/Max Market Trends survey of 16 markets in Canada, fears about rising interest rates and new lending rules have lured new homebuyers out earlier than usual. [3 Reasons for Optimism in Canada.]
  • Canada’s agriculture sector could get a boost, thanks to improving livestock prices and increased fertilizer demand. [Canada’s Olympics Close-Up.]

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.