Lattice Strategies, the San Francisco-based money manager with an emphasis on risk-focused research and investment strategy design, launched its fourth exchange traded fund today, about a month after debuting its first three funds.
The newest ETF from California-based Lattice is the Lattice Global Small Cap Strategy ETF (NYSEArca: ROGS). ROGS tracks the Lattice Risk-Optimized Global Small Cap Strategy Index, which was designed with the idea “of improving return potential in small-cap investing and seeks to capture potential benefits of correlation and valuation differences across small companies in the US, developed and emerging markets,” according to a statement issued by Lattice.
While traditional small-cap benchmarks such as the Russell 2000 and the S&P SmallCap 600, have turned in solid performances this year, ROGS looks to capitalize on an important theme: Missed opportunity in the small-cap space. As Lattice notes, “more than two-thirds of small cap companies are domiciled outside of the United States, representing a potential missed opportunity for investors.”
Home to 455 companies, the Lattice Risk-Optimized Global Small Cap Strategy Index sports favorable valuation and volatility traits relative to familiar U.S.-focused small-cap benchmarks. The Lattice index had a P/E ratio of 13.45 and a standard deviation of 11.3% as of March 12, according to Lattice data.
U.S. stocks account for 49% of the index’s weight with Japanese issues garnering almost 12%. Emerging markets exposure in ROGS looks to be most conservative with South Korea, Taiwan and China combining for nearly 15% of the new ETF’s underlying index’s weight. South Korea and Taiwan are two of the lowest beta emerging markets.
The Lattice Risk-Optimized Global Small Cap Strategy Index has a dividend yield of 3.73%, triple the trailing 12-month yield on the Russell 2000. “From the end of 2013 there has been a 10.2% increase in the number of issues paying a dividend in the S&P SmallCap 600,” according to S&P Dow Jones Indices. [Small-Cap ETFs Offer Dividend Growth]
The Lattice Risk-Optimized Global Small Cap Strategy Index’s top sector weights are nearly 25% to financial services, 18.3% to consumer discretionary and 18.1% to industrials. ROGS charges 0.6% per year.
For its part, Lattice has found quick success in the ETF space. It has only been 18 trading days since the Lattice Emerging Market Strategy ETF (NYSEArca: ROAM), Lattice Developed Markets (ex-US) Strategy ETF (NYSEArca: RODM), and the Lattice US Equity Strategy ETF (NYSEArca: ROUS) came to market, but those ETFs now combine for over $50 million in assets under management. [Lattice Launches Three ETFs]