The iShares MSCI Spain Capped ETF (NYSEArca: EWP), the largest exchange traded fund tracking stocks in the Eurozone’s fourth-largest economy, slumped to a new 52-week low Monday after election results there are seen as bringing the end of Spain’s two-part political system.
“The conservative party of current Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy won the most votes, but lost its majority. The Socialists received the second-most votes, while anti-austerity Podemos party, which was formed only last year, captured third,” reports CNN. “The country’s next government is likely to be a coalition of parties cobbled together from across the political spectrum.”
Earlier this year, Spain and its financial markets dealt with the issue of Catalonian independence as Catalonia makes up almost one-fifth of Spain’s gross domestic product and one-quarter of exports. Losing the region would put a significant dent in Spain’s ability to dig itself out of the prolonged slump. [Catalonia Independence Hangs Over Spain ETFs]
For their efforts, EWP and other Spain ETFs were rewarded when Standard & Poor’s upgraded the country’s credit rating to BBB+. Spain is the fourth-largest economy in the Eurozone behind Germany, France and Italy.
Investors can also consider the factor based SPDR MSCI Spain Quality Mix ETF (NYSEArca: QESP) as an alternative to the cap-weighted EWP. The quality factor “captures excess returns to stocks that are characterized by low debt, stable earnings growth and other ‘quality’ metrics,” according to MSCI.