A Surprise ETF can Keep Soaring

Some other single-country emerging markets exchange traded funds have delivered more jaw-dropping performances this year, but the iShares MSCI Taiwan ETF (NYSEArca: EWT) undoubtedly impresses with a year-to-date gain of almost 19%. That is better than double the return of the MSCI Emerging Markets Index, in which Taiwan is one of the largest country weights.

A year-to-date gain of nearly 19% for the largest Taiwan ETF is made all the more impressive when considering the ETF’s low beta reputation. EWT has, at various points during its almost 16-year history, been a favorite among investors seeking single-country exposure to developing economies because Taiwan is one of the least volatile emerging markets.

EWT has a smart beta rival in the form of the First Trust Taiwan AlphaDEX (NYSEArca: FTW).

“FTW’s benchmark index selects securities from the NASDAQ Taiwan Index and seeks to generate positive alpha by using the AlphaDEX methodology. Under normal market conditions, FTW invests at least 90% of its total net assets in American depositary receipts (ADRs), common stocks and global depositary receipts (GDRs) comprising its underlying index,” adds Investopedia.

FTW is up 12.5% this year.