IXUS vs. IWS: What’s The Difference?

The iShares Core MSCI Total International Stock ETF (IXUS) and the iShares Russell Mid-Cap Value ETF (IWS) are both among the Top 100 ETFs. IXUS is a iShares Foreign Large Blend fund and IWS is a iShares Mid-Cap Value fund. So, what’s the difference between IXUS and IWS? And which fund is better?

The expense ratio of IXUS is 0.14 percentage points lower than IWS’s (0.09% vs. 0.23%). IXUS also has a higher exposure to the financial services sector and a lower standard deviation. Overall, IXUS has provided lower returns than IWS over the past ten years.

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

Summary

IXUS IWS
Name iShares Core MSCI Total International Stock ETF iShares Russell Mid-Cap Value ETF
Category Foreign Large Blend Mid-Cap Value
Issuer iShares iShares
AUM 29.54B 14.24B
Avg. Return 6.09% 12.35%
Div. Yield 2.13% 1.34%
Expense Ratio 0.09% 0.23%

The iShares Core MSCI Total International Stock ETF (IXUS) is a Foreign Large Blend fund that is issued by iShares. It currently has 29.54B total assets under management and has yielded an average annual return of 6.09% over the past 10 years. The fund has a dividend yield of 2.13% with an expense ratio of 0.09%.

The iShares Russell Mid-Cap Value ETF (IWS) is a Mid-Cap Value fund that is issued by iShares. It currently has 14.24B total assets under management and has yielded an average annual return of 12.35% over the past 10 years. The fund has a dividend yield of 1.34% with an expense ratio of 0.23%.

IXUS’s dividend yield is 0.79% higher than that of IWS (2.13% vs. 1.34%). Also, IXUS yielded on average 6.26% less per year over the past decade (6.09% vs. 12.35%). The expense ratio of IXUS is 0.14 percentage points lower than IWS’s (0.09% vs. 0.23%).

Fund Composition

Industry Exposure

IXUS vs. IWS - Industry Exposure

IXUS IWS
Technology 13.24% 11.39%
Industrials 12.78% 14.6%
Energy 4.39% 4.71%
Communication Services 7.09% 4.08%
Utilities 2.95% 6.97%
Healthcare 9.29% 8.56%
Consumer Defensive 8.19% 4.76%
Real Estate 3.66% 11.71%
Financial Services 17.34% 15.75%
Consumer Cyclical 12.57% 12.07%
Basic Materials 8.5% 5.4%

The iShares Core MSCI Total International Stock ETF (IXUS) has the most exposure to the Financial Services sector at 17.34%. This is followed by Technology and Industrials at 13.24% and 12.78% respectively. Real Estate (3.66%), Energy (4.39%), and Communication Services (7.09%) only make up 15.14% of the fund’s total assets.

IXUS’s mid-section with moderate exposure is comprised of Consumer Defensive, Basic Materials, Healthcare, Consumer Cyclical, and Industrials stocks at 8.19%, 8.5%, 9.29%, 12.57%, and 12.78%.

The iShares Russell Mid-Cap Value ETF (IWS) has the most exposure to the Financial Services sector at 15.75%. This is followed by Industrials and Consumer Cyclical at 14.6% and 12.07% respectively. Energy (4.71%), Consumer Defensive (4.76%), and Basic Materials (5.4%) only make up 14.87% of the fund’s total assets.

IWS’s mid-section with moderate exposure is comprised of Utilities, Healthcare, Technology, Real Estate, and Consumer Cyclical stocks at 6.97%, 8.56%, 11.39%, 11.71%, and 12.07%.

IXUS is 1.59% more exposed to the Financial Services sector than IWS (17.34% vs 15.75%). IXUS’s exposure to Technology and Industrials stocks is 1.85% higher and 1.82% lower respectively (13.24% vs. 11.39% and 12.78% vs. 14.6%). In total, Real Estate, Energy, and Communication Services also make up 5.36% less of the fund’s holdings compared to IWS (15.14% vs. 20.50%).

Holdings

IXUS - Holdings

IXUS Holdings Weight
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd 1.64%
Tencent Holdings Ltd 1.35%
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd Ordinary Shares 1.34%
Nestle SA 1.1%
Samsung Electronics Co Ltd 1.06%
ASML Holding NV 0.9%
Roche Holding AG 0.81%
LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE 0.67%
Novartis AG 0.62%
Toyota Motor Corp 0.59%

IXUS’s Top Holdings are Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd, Tencent Holdings Ltd, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd Ordinary Shares, Nestle SA, and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd at 1.64%, 1.35%, 1.34%, 1.1%, and 1.06%.

ASML Holding NV (0.9%), Roche Holding AG (0.81%), and LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE (0.67%) have a slightly smaller but still significant weight. Novartis AG and Toyota Motor Corp are also represented in the IXUS’s holdings at 0.62% and 0.59%.

IWS - Holdings

IWS Holdings Weight
Twitter Inc 0.69%
Marvell Technology Inc 0.69%
IHS Markit Ltd 0.62%
Prudential Financial Inc 0.56%
Otis Worldwide Corp Ordinary Shares 0.54%
International Flavors & Fragrances Inc 0.53%
Xcel Energy Inc 0.52%
Motorola Solutions Inc 0.52%
Aptiv PLC 0.52%
Aflac Inc 0.52%

IWS’s Top Holdings are Twitter Inc, Marvell Technology Inc, IHS Markit Ltd, Prudential Financial Inc, and Otis Worldwide Corp Ordinary Shares at 0.69%, 0.69%, 0.62%, 0.56%, and 0.54%.

International Flavors & Fragrances Inc (0.53%), Xcel Energy Inc (0.52%), and Motorola Solutions Inc (0.52%) have a slightly smaller but still significant weight. Aptiv PLC and Aflac Inc are also represented in the IWS’s holdings at 0.52% and 0.52%.

Risk Analysis

IXUS IWS
Mean Return 0 1.06
R-squared 0 87.04
Std. Deviation 0 16.03
Alpha 0 -4.11
Beta 0 1.1
Sharpe Ratio 0 0.75
Treynor Ratio 0 10.3

The iShares Core MSCI Total International Stock ETF (IXUS) has a R-squared of 0 with a Alpha of 0 and a Mean Return of 0. Its Beta is 0 while IXUS’s Treynor Ratio is 0. Furthermore, the fund has a Sharpe Ratio of 0 and a Standard Deviation of 0.

The iShares Russell Mid-Cap Value ETF (IWS) has a Alpha of -4.11 with a Treynor Ratio of 10.3 and a R-squared of 87.04. Its Standard Deviation is 16.03 while IWS’s Sharpe Ratio is 0.75. Furthermore, the fund has a Beta of 1.1 and a Mean Return of 1.06.

IXUS’s Mean Return is 1.06 points lower than that of IWS and its R-squared is 87.04 points lower. With a Standard Deviation of 0, IXUS is slightly less volatile than IWS. The Alpha and Beta of IXUS are 4.11 points higher and 1.10 points lower than IWS’s Alpha and Beta.

Performance

Annual Returns

IXUS vs. IWS - Annual Returns

Year IXUS IWS
2020 11.14% 4.76%
2019 21.85% 26.78%
2018 -14.55% -12.36%
2017 28.08% 13.1%
2016 4.66% 19.69%
2015 -4.62% -4.93%
2014 -3.96% 14.49%
2013 15.85% 33.11%
2012 0.0% 18.27%
2011 0.0% -1.55%
2010 0.0% 24.46%

IXUS had its best year in 2017 with an annual return of 28.08%. IXUS’s worst year over the past decade yielded -14.55% and occurred in 2018. In most years the iShares Core MSCI Total International Stock ETF provided moderate returns such as in 2011, 2010, and 2016 where annual returns amounted to 0.0%, 0.0%, and 4.66% respectively.

The year 2013 was the strongest year for IWS, returning 33.11% on an annual basis. The poorest year for IWS in the last ten years was 2018, with a yield of -12.36%. Most years the iShares Russell Mid-Cap Value ETF has given investors modest returns, such as in 2017, 2014, and 2012, when gains were 13.1%, 14.49%, and 18.27% respectively.

Portfolio Growth

IXUS vs. IWS - Portfolio Growth

Fund Initial Balance Final Balance CAGR
IXUS $10,000 $14,209 6.09%
IWS $10,000 $17,150 12.35%

A $10,000 investment in IXUS would have resulted in a final balance of $14,209. This is a profit of $4,209 over 7 years and amounts to a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.09%.

With a $10,000 investment in IWS, the end total would have been $17,150. This equates to a $7,150 profit over 7 years and a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.35%.

IXUS’s CAGR is 6.26 percentage points lower than that of IWS and as a result, would have yielded $2,941 less on a $10,000 investment. Thus, IXUS performed worse than IWS by 6.26% annually.


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