The WisdomTree Japan Hedged Equity Fund (NYSEArca: DXJ), iShares Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF (NYSEArca: HEWJ) and Deutsche X-trackers MSCI Japan Hedged Equity ETF (NYSEArca: DBJP) have been go-to options to access Japanese equities markets while hedging against foreign exchange risks. The weakening yen could also bolster these investment options as the three hedged Japan ETFs all track large Japanese companies, which include exporters that benefit from a weak yen.[related_stories]
Moreover, investors may also consider hedged ETFs that track the more recently launched JPX-Nikkei 400 Index. The JPX-Nikkei 400 Index was launched in January 2014 as a means of reinvigorating the Japanese equity market. The Index employs a rigorous screening process based on return on equity, cumulative operating profit and market capitalization to select high-quality, capital-efficient Japanese companies. As part of the Abe administration’s revitalization plan, the BOJ and large state funds have steered away from conservative bets for riskier equity exposure, including ETFs that track customized benchmarks like the JPX-Nikkei 400 Index.
U.S. ETF investors can also track the benchmark index through relatively new offerings, including the Deutsche X-trackers Japan JPX-Nikkei 400 Hedged Equity ETF (NYSEArca: JPNH) and iShares Currency Hedged JPX-Nikkei 400 ETF (NYSEArca: HJPX).
Alternatively, if you still have an uncertain outlook on the Japanese yen and U.S. dollar, an ETF investor may consider alternative options that take a more neutral view on foreign currency movements. For instance, IndexIQ has a handful of 50% hedged/50% unhedged option, including the IQ 50 Percent Hedged FTSE Japan ETF (NYS Arca: HFXJ).
ETF investors may also look to some relatively new dynamic or adaptive currency-hedged international stock strategies. For instance, BlackRock offers the iShares Adaptive Currency Hedged MSCI Japan ETF (BATS: DEWJ), which may shift from a 0% unhedged currency exposure to a 100% fully hedged, depending on differences in interest rates, relative valuations, currency momentum and currency volatility.
WisdomTree also offers the WisdomTree Dynamic Currency Hedged Japan Equity Fund (BATS: DDJP), which hedge currency fluctuations in the relative value of the foreign currency against the USD, ranging from 0% to 100% hedge based on interest rate differentials, valuations and relative price momentum of the foreign currencies compared to the USD.