“Against this economic backdrop, we continue to advocate overweighting stocks, which remain more attractively valued than bonds and cash,” Koesterich said. “That said, U.S. equity market gains will likely be more modest this year than in 2013, and international stocks have more room for multiple expansion.”
ETF investors have a number of ways to play BlackRock’s equity plays. For instance, The SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF (NYSEArca: DIA), SPDR S&P 500 (NYSEArca: SPY) and PowerShares QQQ (NasdaqGS: QQQ) provide exposure to three prominent U.S. benchmarks, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100, respectively.
Investors interested in European stocks can take a look at Vanguard FTSE Europe ETF (NYSEArca: VGK) and iShares Europe ETF (NYSEArca: IEV). The two ETFs include broad European equity exposure, including non-Eurozone members U.K. and Switzerland. On the other hand, the SPDR EURO STOXX 50 Fund (NYSEArca: FEZ) excludes the U.K. and Switzerland in favor of a heavy tilt toward Eurozone countries. [Cheap Valuations Lure Buyers to Europe ETFs]
Finally, the iShares MSCI Japan ETF (NYSEArca: EWJ) provides exposure to Japanese equities, but the investment is a a non-currency hedged ETF, which means a depreciating yen will negatively affect the fund. Alternatively, the WisdomTree Japan Hedged Equity Fund (NYSEArca: DXJ) and db X-trackers MSCI Japan Hedged Equity Fund (NYSEArca: DBJP) both hedge against a weaker yen currency. [Japan ETFs: Down, but not Out]
For more information on the broader stock market, visit our S&P 500 category.