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Is Schwab Fundamental Emerging Markets Large Company Index ETF (FNDE) a Strong ETF Right Now?

The Schwab Fundamental Emerging Markets Large Company Index ETF (FNDE) made its debut on 08/13/2013, and is a smart beta exchange traded fund that provides broad exposure to the Broad Emerging Market ETFs category of the market.

What Are Smart Beta ETFs?

The ETF industry has traditionally been dominated by products based on market capitalization weighted indexes that are designed to represent the market or a particular segment of the market.

Market cap weighted indexes offer a low-cost, convenient, and transparent way of replicating market returns, and are a good option for investors who believe in market efficiency.

But, there are some investors who would rather invest in smart beta funds; these funds track non-cap weighted strategies, and are a strong option for those who prefer choosing great stocks in order to beat the market.

Non-cap weighted indexes try to choose stocks that have a better chance of risk-return performance, which is based on specific fundamental characteristics, or a mix of other such characteristics.

Methodologies like equal-weighting, one of the simplest options out there, fundamental weighting, and volatility/momentum based weighting are all choices offered to investors in this space, but not all of them can deliver superior returns.

Fund Sponsor & Index

The fund is managed by Charles Schwab, and has been able to amass over $4.43 billion, which makes it one of the largest ETFs in the Broad Emerging Market ETFs. This particular fund, before fees and expenses, seeks to match the performance of the Russell RAFI Emerging Markets Large Co. Index (Net).

The Russell RAFI Emerging Markets Large Company Index (Net) ranks companies in the Russell Emerging Markets Index by measures of fundamental size and tracks the performance of those companies whose fundamental scores are in the top 87.5% of the Russell Emerging Markets Index.

Cost & Other Expenses

Cost is an important factor in selecting the right ETF, and cheaper funds can significantly outperform their more expensive cousins if all other fundamentals are the same.

With on par with most peer products in the space, this ETF has annual operating expenses of 0.39%.

The fund has a 12-month trailing dividend yield of 4.78%.

Sector Exposure and Top Holdings

It is important to delve into an ETF's holdings before investing despite the many upsides to these kinds of funds like diversified exposure, which minimizes single stock risk. And, most ETFs are very transparent products that disclose their holdings on a daily basis.

Looking at individual holdings, Gazprom Pjsc Common Stock Rub5.0 (GAZP) accounts for about 4.49% of total assets, followed by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufac Common Stock Twd10. And Lukoil Pjsc Common Stock Rub.025 (LKOH).

Performance and Risk

The ETF has lost about -10.55% and is down about -6% so far this year and in the past one year (as of 03/17/2022), respectively. FNDE has traded between $26.69 and $33.49 during this last 52-week period.

The fund has a beta of 0.84 and standard deviation of 23.29% for the trailing three-year period, which makes FNDE a medium risk choice in this particular space. With about 370 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.

Alternatives

Schwab Fundamental Emerging Markets Large Company Index ETF is a reasonable option for investors seeking to outperform the Broad Emerging Market ETFs segment of the market. However, there are other ETFs in the space which investors could consider.

IShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (IEMG) tracks MSCI Emerging Markets Investable Market Index and the Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets ETF (VWO) tracks FTSE Emerging Markets All Cap China A Inclusion Index. IShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF has $70.93 billion in assets, Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets ETF has $77.10 billion. IEMG has an expense ratio of 0.11% and VWO charges 0.08%.

Investors looking for cheaper and lower-risk options should consider traditional market cap weighted ETFs that aim to match the returns of the Broad Emerging Market ETFs.

Bottom Line

To learn more about this product and other ETFs, screen for products that match your investment objectives and read articles on latest developments in the ETF investing universe, please visit Zacks ETF Center.


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Schwab Fundamental Emerging Markets Large Company Index ETF (FNDE): ETF Research Reports
 
iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (IEMG): ETF Research Reports
 
Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets ETF (VWO): ETF Research Reports
 
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