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GLD vs. IWB: What’s The Difference?

The SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) and the iShares Russell 1000 ETF (IWB) are both among the Top 100 ETFs. GLD is a SPDR State Street Global Advisors N/A fund and IWB is a iShares Large Blend fund. So, what’s the difference between GLD and IWB? And which fund is better?

The expense ratio of GLD is 0.25 percentage points higher than IWB’s (0.4% vs. 0.15%). GLD also has a lower exposure to the technology sector and a higher standard deviation. Overall, GLD has provided lower returns than IWB over the past ten years.

In this article, we’ll compare GLD vs. IWB. We’ll look at portfolio growth and holdings, as well as at their industry exposure and annual returns. Moreover, I’ll also discuss GLD’s and IWB’s risk metrics, performance, and fund composition and examine how these affect their overall returns.

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Summary

GLDIWB
NameSPDR Gold SharesiShares Russell 1000 ETF
CategoryN/ALarge Blend
IssuerSPDR State Street Global AdvisorsiShares
AUM59.26B30.54B
Avg. Return5.81%14.64%
Div. Yield0.0%1.14%
Expense Ratio0.4%0.15%

The SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) is a N/A fund that is issued by SPDR State Street Global Advisors. It currently has 59.26B total assets under management and has yielded an average annual return of 5.81% over the past 10 years. The fund has a dividend yield of 0.0% with an expense ratio of 0.4%.

The iShares Russell 1000 ETF (IWB) is a Large Blend fund that is issued by iShares. It currently has 30.54B total assets under management and has yielded an average annual return of 14.64% over the past 10 years. The fund has a dividend yield of 1.14% with an expense ratio of 0.15%.

GLD’s dividend yield is 1.14% lower than that of IWB (0.0% vs. 1.14%). Also, GLD yielded on average 8.83% less per year over the past decade (5.81% vs. 14.64%). The expense ratio of GLD is 0.25 percentage points higher than IWB’s (0.4% vs. 0.15%).

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Fund Composition

Industry Exposure

GLD vs. IWB - Industry Exposure

GLDIWB
Technology0.0%25.33%
Industrials0.0%8.88%
Energy0.0%2.44%
Communication Services0.0%10.83%
Utilities0.0%2.36%
Healthcare0.0%13.35%
Consumer Defensive0.0%5.97%
Real Estate0.0%3.34%
Financial Services0.0%13.64%
Consumer Cyclical0.0%11.85%
Basic Materials0.0%2.02%

The SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) has the most exposure to the Technology sector at 0.0%. This is followed by Industrials and Energy at 0.0% and 0.0% respectively. Consumer Cyclical (0.0%), Financial Services (0.0%), and Real Estate (0.0%) only make up 0.00% of the fund’s total assets.

GLD’s mid-section with moderate exposure is comprised of Consumer Defensive, Healthcare, Utilities, Communication Services, and Energy stocks at 0.0%, 0.0%, 0.0%, 0.0%, and 0.0%.

The iShares Russell 1000 ETF (IWB) has the most exposure to the Technology sector at 25.33%. This is followed by Financial Services and Healthcare at 13.64% and 13.35% respectively. Utilities (2.36%), Energy (2.44%), and Real Estate (3.34%) only make up 8.14% of the fund’s total assets.

IWB’s mid-section with moderate exposure is comprised of Consumer Defensive, Industrials, Communication Services, Consumer Cyclical, and Healthcare stocks at 5.97%, 8.88%, 10.83%, 11.85%, and 13.35%.

GLD is 25.33% less exposed to the Technology sector than IWB (0.0% vs 25.33%). GLD’s exposure to Industrials and Energy stocks is 8.88% lower and 2.44% lower respectively (0.0% vs. 8.88% and 0.0% vs. 2.44%). In total, Consumer Cyclical, Financial Services, and Real Estate also make up 28.83% less of the fund’s holdings compared to IWB (0.00% vs. 28.83%).

Holdings

GLD - Holdings

GLD HoldingsWeight
Gold Trust100.0%
N/A0%
N/A0%
N/A0%
N/A0%
N/A0%
N/A0%
N/A0%
N/A0%
N/A0%

GLD’s Top Holdings are Gold Trust, N/A, N/A, N/A, and N/A at 100.0%, 0%, 0%, 0%, and 0%.

N/A (0%), N/A (0%), and N/A (0%) have a slightly smaller but still significant weight. N/A and N/A are also represented in the GLD’s holdings at 0% and 0%.

IWB - Holdings

IWB HoldingsWeight
Apple Inc5.45%
Microsoft Corp5.11%
Amazon.com Inc3.43%
Facebook Inc Class A2.03%
Alphabet Inc Class A1.93%
Alphabet Inc Class C1.82%
Tesla Inc1.27%
Berkshire Hathaway Inc Class B1.24%
NVIDIA Corp1.11%
JPMorgan Chase & Co1.09%

IWB’s Top Holdings are Apple Inc, Microsoft Corp, Amazon.com Inc, Facebook Inc Class A, and Alphabet Inc Class A at 5.45%, 5.11%, 3.43%, 2.03%, and 1.93%.

Alphabet Inc Class C (1.82%), Tesla Inc (1.27%), and Berkshire Hathaway Inc Class B (1.24%) have a slightly smaller but still significant weight. NVIDIA Corp and JPMorgan Chase & Co are also represented in the IWB’s holdings at 1.11% and 1.09%.

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Risk Analysis

GLDIWB
Mean Return0.211.27
R-squared16.2199.73
Std. Deviation16.5813.87
Alpha3.91-0.38
Beta0.481.02
Sharpe Ratio0.121.05
Treynor Ratio1.2114.31

The SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) has a Mean Return of 0.21 with a Alpha of 3.91 and a R-squared of 16.21. Its Sharpe Ratio is 0.12 while GLD’s Beta is 0.48. Furthermore, the fund has a Treynor Ratio of 1.21 and a Standard Deviation of 16.58.

The iShares Russell 1000 ETF (IWB) has a Alpha of -0.38 with a Treynor Ratio of 14.31 and a Beta of 1.02. Its Mean Return is 1.27 while IWB’s Sharpe Ratio is 1.05. Furthermore, the fund has a R-squared of 99.73 and a Standard Deviation of 13.87.

GLD’s Mean Return is 1.06 points lower than that of IWB and its R-squared is 83.52 points lower. With a Standard Deviation of 16.58, GLD is slightly more volatile than IWB. The Alpha and Beta of GLD are 4.29 points higher and 0.54 points lower than IWB’s Alpha and Beta.

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Performance

Annual Returns

GLD vs. IWB - Annual Returns

YearGLDIWB
202023.68%20.8%
201918.36%31.26%
2018-1.54%-4.91%
201711.41%21.53%
20168.69%11.91%
2015-11.78%0.82%
2014-0.58%13.08%
2013-28.09%32.93%
20125.26%16.27%
201111.2%1.36%
201027.25%15.94%

GLD had its best year in 2010 with an annual return of 27.25%. GLD’s worst year over the past decade yielded -28.09% and occurred in 2013. In most years the SPDR Gold Shares provided moderate returns such as in 2012, 2016, and 2011 where annual returns amounted to 5.26%, 8.69%, and 11.2% respectively.

The year 2013 was the strongest year for IWB, returning 32.93% on an annual basis. The poorest year for IWB in the last ten years was 2018, with a yield of -4.91%. Most years the iShares Russell 1000 ETF has given investors modest returns, such as in 2014, 2010, and 2012, when gains were 13.08%, 15.94%, and 16.27% respectively.

Portfolio Growth

GLD vs. IWB - Portfolio Growth

FundInitial BalanceFinal BalanceCAGR
GLD$10,000$16,3955.81%
IWB$10,000$42,46214.64%

A $10,000 investment in GLD would have resulted in a final balance of $16,395. This is a profit of $6,395 over 11 years and amounts to a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.81%.

With a $10,000 investment in IWB, the end total would have been $42,462. This equates to a $32,462 profit over 11 years and a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.64%.

GLD’s CAGR is 8.83 percentage points lower than that of IWB and as a result, would have yielded $26,067 less on a $10,000 investment. Thus, GLD performed worse than IWB by 8.83% annually.


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