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Should SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF (DIA) Be on Your Investing Radar?

Zacks.com logo Zacks.com 12/30/2021

Looking for broad exposure to the Large Cap Value segment of the US equity market? You should consider the SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF (DIA), a passively managed exchange traded fund launched on 01/13/1998.

The fund is sponsored by State Street Global Advisors. It has amassed assets over $30.18 billion, making it one of the largest ETFs attempting to match the Large Cap Value segment of the US equity market.

Why Large Cap Value

Companies that find themselves in the large cap category typically have a market capitalization above $10 billion. Overall, they are usually a stable option, with less risk and more sure-fire cash flows than mid and small cap companies.

Carrying lower than average price-to-earnings and price-to-book ratios, value stocks also have lower than average sales and earnings growth rates. When you look at long-term performance, value stocks have outperformed growth stocks in nearly all markets. But in strong bull markets, growth stocks are more likely to be winners.

Costs

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

Annual operating expenses for this ETF are 0.16%, making it one of the cheaper products in the space.

It has a 12-month trailing dividend yield of 1.57%.

Sector Exposure and Top Holdings

ETFs offer a diversified exposure and thus minimize single stock risk but it is still important to delve into a fund's holdings before investing. Most ETFs are very transparent products and many disclose their holdings on a daily basis.

This ETF has heaviest allocation to the Information Technology sector--about 22.50% of the portfolio. Healthcare and Financials round out the top three.

Looking at individual holdings, Unitedhealth Group Incorporated (UNH) accounts for about 8.32% of total assets, followed by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) and Home Depot Inc. (HD).

The top 10 holdings account for about 54.56% of total assets under management.

Performance and Risk

DIA seeks to match the performance of the Dow Jones Industrial Average before fees and expenses. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is composed of thirty blue-chip U.S. stocks.

The ETF return is roughly 22.58% so far this year and was up about 22.12% in the last one year (as of 12/30/2021). In the past 52-week period, it has traded between $299.81 and $364.84.

The ETF has a beta of 0.99 and standard deviation of 23.40% for the trailing three-year period, making it a medium risk choice in the space. With about 31 holdings, it has more concentrated exposure than peers.

Alternatives

SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF holds a Zacks ETF Rank of 2 (Buy), which is based on expected asset class return, expense ratio, and momentum, among other factors. Because of this, DIA is an excellent option for investors seeking exposure to the Style Box - Large Cap Value segment of the market. There are other additional ETFs in the space that investors could consider as well.

The iShares Russell 1000 Value ETF (IWD) and the Vanguard Value ETF (VTV) track a similar index. While iShares Russell 1000 Value ETF has $59.97 billion in assets, Vanguard Value ETF has $92.31 billion. IWD has an expense ratio of 0.19% and VTV charges 0.04%.

Bottom-Line

Retail and institutional investors increasingly turn to passively managed ETFs because they offer low costs, transparency, flexibility, and tax efficiency; these kind of funds are also excellent vehicles for long term investors.

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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