Smart beta, arguably the newest phenomenon in the exchange traded funds business, is more than just a fad. Year-to-date inflows of more than $45 billion to U.S.-listed smart beta funds confirm as much.
Not only are assets under management at smart beta ETFs growing, but so is the number of funds that dwell in the space. Earlier this year, Charles Schwab introduced six fundamental index ETFs. Those ETFs track the Russell Fundamental Index Series, which is based on methodology developed by Rob Arnott and Research Affiliates. [Schwab Launches Smart-Beta ETFs]
However, the concept of “intelligent” indexing is not new. ETF sponsors such as First Trust, FlexShares and PowerShares have expansive lineups of non-cap weighted funds that have tens of billions in assets under management combined. [Advisors Warm to Smart Beta ETFs]
That is to say in a growing universe of smart beta funds, some worthwhile products may be going overlooked. Some are broad market funds, others are plays on foreign markets, developed and emerging, while others are sector ETFs.
And that is what we are going to do in this slideshow: Unearth some of the hidden gems of the smart-beta ETF arena. That means this list’s constituents are not ranked by returns, the methodology used for some of our other recent slideshows. [Best Global Markets by Single Country ETFs]
Here, we are simply exploring smart beta ETFs with potential to deliver for investors going forward. Included are assets under management totals, year-to-date performances and a comment on each fund.