The U.S. is the undisputed king among dividend markets. Last year, S&P 500 members account for about $312 billion of the $1.03 trillion in global dividends paid.
Last year was the first time combined global dividends topped $1 trillion, which is to say dividend growth is in vogue and in more countries than just the U.S. With international dividend payers often home to higher yields than their U.S. counterparts and payouts growing in developed markets beyond the U.S., some new exchange traded funds are specifically designed to capture international dividend growth.
The ProShares MSCI EAFE Dividend Growers ETF (NYSEArca: EFAD), which is less than a month old, is one of those funds.
EFAD follows the MSCI EAFE Dividend Masters Index, which holds members of the MSCI EAFE Index that have increased their dividends for at least 10 straight years. The emphasis on dividend increase streaks is the backbone of some of the most popular U.S.-focused dividend ETFs. [Different Types of Dividend ETFs]
At the sector level, EFAD has plenty to offer conservative income investors with a combined 43.3% weight to the consumer staples and health care sectors. Interestingly, those sectors combine for just 19% of the iShares MSCI EAFE ETF’s (NYSEArca: EFA) weight.
On that note, it is worth noting dividend growers in the MSCI EAFE Index have historically outperformed the index with less volatility. [New EAFE Dividend ETF Debuts]
Important to EFAD’s dividend growth equation is its country allocations. In this case, that means a hefty 47.2% weight to the U.K. That is the ETF’s only double-digit country weight and more than two and a half times the U.K. weight found in EFA.