IWR vs. MDY: What’s The Difference?

The iShares Russell Mid-Cap ETF (IWR) and the SPDR S&P MIDCAP 400 ETF Trust (MDY) are both among the Top 100 ETFs. IWR is a iShares Mid-Cap Blend fund and MDY is a SPDR State Street Global Advisors Mid-Cap Blend fund. So, what’s the difference between IWR and MDY? And which fund is better?

The expense ratio of IWR is 0.04 percentage points lower than MDY’s (0.19% vs. 0.23%). IWR also has a higher exposure to the technology sector and a lower standard deviation. Overall, IWR has provided higher returns than MDY over the past ten years.

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

Summary

IWR MDY
Name iShares Russell Mid-Cap ETF SPDR S&P MIDCAP 400 ETF Trust
Category Mid-Cap Blend Mid-Cap Blend
Issuer iShares SPDR State Street Global Advisors
AUM 29.84B 21.31B
Avg. Return 14.15% 13.29%
Div. Yield 0.99% 0.94%
Expense Ratio 0.19% 0.23%

The iShares Russell Mid-Cap ETF (IWR) is a Mid-Cap Blend fund that is issued by iShares. It currently has 29.84B total assets under management and has yielded an average annual return of 14.15% over the past 10 years. The fund has a dividend yield of 0.99% with an expense ratio of 0.19%.

The SPDR S&P MIDCAP 400 ETF Trust (MDY) is a Mid-Cap Blend fund that is issued by SPDR State Street Global Advisors. It currently has 21.31B total assets under management and has yielded an average annual return of 13.29% over the past 10 years. The fund has a dividend yield of 0.94% with an expense ratio of 0.23%.

IWR’s dividend yield is 0.05% higher than that of MDY (0.99% vs. 0.94%). Also, IWR yielded on average 0.86% more per year over the past decade (14.15% vs. 13.29%). The expense ratio of IWR is 0.04 percentage points lower than MDY’s (0.19% vs. 0.23%).

Fund Composition

Industry Exposure

IWR vs. MDY - Industry Exposure

IWR MDY
Technology 19.67% 14.74%
Industrials 14.54% 17.88%
Energy 3.48% 2.52%
Communication Services 4.64% 1.63%
Utilities 4.46% 2.84%
Healthcare 11.76% 11.17%
Consumer Defensive 3.82% 4.2%
Real Estate 8.31% 9.66%
Financial Services 11.64% 15.2%
Consumer Cyclical 13.59% 14.89%
Basic Materials 4.1% 5.27%

The iShares Russell Mid-Cap ETF (IWR) has the most exposure to the Technology sector at 19.67%. This is followed by Industrials and Consumer Cyclical at 14.54% and 13.59% respectively. Consumer Defensive (3.82%), Basic Materials (4.1%), and Utilities (4.46%) only make up 12.38% of the fund’s total assets.

IWR’s mid-section with moderate exposure is comprised of Communication Services, Real Estate, Financial Services, Healthcare, and Consumer Cyclical stocks at 4.64%, 8.31%, 11.64%, 11.76%, and 13.59%.

The SPDR S&P MIDCAP 400 ETF Trust (MDY) has the most exposure to the Industrials sector at 17.88%. This is followed by Financial Services and Consumer Cyclical at 15.2% and 14.89% respectively. Energy (2.52%), Utilities (2.84%), and Consumer Defensive (4.2%) only make up 9.56% of the fund’s total assets.

MDY’s mid-section with moderate exposure is comprised of Basic Materials, Real Estate, Healthcare, Technology, and Consumer Cyclical stocks at 5.27%, 9.66%, 11.17%, 14.74%, and 14.89%.

IWR is 4.93% more exposed to the Technology sector than MDY (19.67% vs 14.74%). IWR’s exposure to Industrials and Consumer Cyclical stocks is 3.34% lower and 1.30% lower respectively (14.54% vs. 17.88% and 13.59% vs. 14.89%). In total, Consumer Defensive, Basic Materials, and Utilities also make up 0.07% more of the fund’s holdings compared to MDY (12.38% vs. 12.31%).

Holdings

IWR - Holdings

IWR Holdings Weight
IDEXX Laboratories Inc 0.51%
DocuSign Inc 0.51%
Twitter Inc 0.48%
Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc 0.47%
Roku Inc Class A 0.44%
Marvell Technology Inc 0.44%
DexCom Inc 0.44%
Trane Technologies PLC 0.43%
MSCI Inc 0.43%
Carrier Global Corp Ordinary Shares 0.43%

IWR’s Top Holdings are IDEXX Laboratories Inc, DocuSign Inc, Twitter Inc, Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc, and Roku Inc Class A at 0.51%, 0.51%, 0.48%, 0.47%, and 0.44%.

Marvell Technology Inc (0.44%), DexCom Inc (0.44%), and Trane Technologies PLC (0.43%) have a slightly smaller but still significant weight. MSCI Inc and Carrier Global Corp Ordinary Shares are also represented in the IWR’s holdings at 0.43% and 0.43%.

MDY - Holdings

MDY Holdings Weight
Bio-Techne Corp 0.75%
Molina Healthcare Inc 0.63%
Cognex Corp 0.63%
Fair Isaac Corp 0.62%
XPO Logistics Inc 0.61%
SolarEdge Technologies Inc 0.61%
Signature Bank 0.6%
Graco Inc 0.55%
Camden Property Trust 0.55%
FactSet Research Systems Inc 0.54%

MDY’s Top Holdings are Bio-Techne Corp, Molina Healthcare Inc, Cognex Corp, Fair Isaac Corp, and XPO Logistics Inc at 0.75%, 0.63%, 0.63%, 0.62%, and 0.61%.

SolarEdge Technologies Inc (0.61%), Signature Bank (0.6%), and Graco Inc (0.55%) have a slightly smaller but still significant weight. Camden Property Trust and FactSet Research Systems Inc are also represented in the MDY’s holdings at 0.55% and 0.54%.

Risk Analysis

IWR MDY
Mean Return 1.17 1.08
R-squared 91.52 86.66
Std. Deviation 15.66 16.83
Alpha -2.8 -4.1
Beta 1.11 1.15
Sharpe Ratio 0.86 0.73
Treynor Ratio 11.72 9.97

The iShares Russell Mid-Cap ETF (IWR) has a Beta of 1.11 with a Standard Deviation of 15.66 and a Treynor Ratio of 11.72. Its Mean Return is 1.17 while IWR’s R-squared is 91.52. Furthermore, the fund has a Sharpe Ratio of 0.86 and a Alpha of -2.8.

The SPDR S&P MIDCAP 400 ETF Trust (MDY) has a Mean Return of 1.08 with a Alpha of -4.1 and a Beta of 1.15. Its Treynor Ratio is 9.97 while MDY’s Sharpe Ratio is 0.73. Furthermore, the fund has a Standard Deviation of 16.83 and a R-squared of 86.66.

IWR’s Mean Return is 0.09 points higher than that of MDY and its R-squared is 4.86 points higher. With a Standard Deviation of 15.66, IWR is slightly less volatile than MDY. The Alpha and Beta of IWR are 1.30 points higher and 0.04 points lower than MDY’s Alpha and Beta.

Performance

Annual Returns

IWR vs. MDY - Annual Returns

Year IWR MDY
2020 16.91% 13.51%
2019 30.31% 25.86%
2018 -9.13% -11.28%
2017 18.32% 15.89%
2016 13.58% 20.33%
2015 -2.57% -2.4%
2014 13.03% 9.42%
2013 34.5% 33.08%
2012 17.13% 17.58%
2011 -1.67% -1.99%
2010 25.25% 26.17%

IWR had its best year in 2013 with an annual return of 34.5%. IWR’s worst year over the past decade yielded -9.13% and occurred in 2018. In most years the iShares Russell Mid-Cap ETF provided moderate returns such as in 2016, 2020, and 2012 where annual returns amounted to 13.58%, 16.91%, and 17.13% respectively.

The year 2013 was the strongest year for MDY, returning 33.08% on an annual basis. The poorest year for MDY in the last ten years was 2018, with a yield of -11.28%. Most years the SPDR S&P MIDCAP 400 ETF Trust has given investors modest returns, such as in 2020, 2017, and 2012, when gains were 13.51%, 15.89%, and 17.58% respectively.

Portfolio Growth

IWR vs. MDY - Portfolio Growth

Fund Initial Balance Final Balance CAGR
IWR $10,000 $39,751 14.15%
MDY $10,000 $36,524 13.29%

A $10,000 investment in IWR would have resulted in a final balance of $39,751. This is a profit of $29,751 over 11 years and amounts to a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.15%.

With a $10,000 investment in MDY, the end total would have been $36,524. This equates to a $26,524 profit over 11 years and a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13.29%.

IWR’s CAGR is 0.86 percentage points higher than that of MDY and as a result, would have yielded $3,227 more on a $10,000 investment. Thus, IWR outperformed MDY by 0.86% annually.


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