Should Franklin LibertyQ U.S. Equity ETF (FLQL) Be on Your Investing Radar?

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Designed to provide broad exposure to the Large Cap Blend segment of the US equity market, the Franklin LibertyQ U.S. Equity ETF (FLQL) is a passively managed exchange traded fund launched on 04/26/2017.

The fund is sponsored by Franklin Templeton Investments. It has amassed assets over $1.24 billion, making it one of the larger ETFs attempting to match the Large Cap Blend segment of the US equity market.

Why Large Cap Blend

Companies that find themselves in the large cap category typically have a market capitalization above $10 billion. They tend to be stable companies with predictable cash flows and are usually less volatile than mid and small cap companies.

Blend ETFs are aptly named, since they tend to hold a mix of growth and value stocks, as well as show characteristics of both kinds of equities.

Costs

When considering an ETF’s total return, expense ratios are an important factor, and cheaper funds can significantly outperform their more expensive counterparts in the long term if all other factors remain equal.

Annual operating expenses for this ETF are 0.15%, making it one of the least expensive products in the space.

It has a 12-month trailing dividend yield of 1.97%.

Sector Exposure and Top Holdings

Even though ETFs offer diversified exposure that minimizes single stock risk, investors should also look at the actual holdings inside the fund. Luckily, most ETFs are very transparent products that disclose their holdings on a daily basis.

This ETF has heaviest allocation to the Information Technology sector–about 24.30% of the portfolio. Healthcare and Industrials round out the top three.

Looking at individual holdings, Nvidia Corp (NVDA) accounts for about 1.20% of total assets, followed by Adobe Inc (ADBE) and Eli Lilly + Co (LLY).

The top 10 holdings account for about 10.92% of total assets under management.

Performance and Risk

FLQL seeks to match the performance of the LibertyQ US Large Cap Equity Index before fees and expenses. The U.S. Large Cap Underlying Index seeks to achieve a lower level of risk and higher risk-adjusted performance than the Russell 1000 Index over the long term by applying a multi-factor selection process, which is designed to select equity securities from the Russell 1000 Index that have favorable exposure to four investment style factors quality, value, momentum and low volatility.

The ETF has gained about 16.67% so far this year and is up roughly 32.80% in the last one year (as of 07/19/2021). In the past 52-week period, it has traded between $33.39 and $43.50.

The ETF has a beta of 0.90 and standard deviation of 21.41% for the trailing three-year period. With about 258 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.

Alternatives

Franklin LibertyQ U.S. Equity ETF carries a Zacks ETF Rank of 3 (Hold), which is based on expected asset class return, expense ratio, and momentum, among other factors. Thus, FLQL is a sufficient option for those seeking exposure to the Style Box – Large Cap Blend area of the market. Investors might also want to consider some other ETF options in the space.

The iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV) and the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) track a similar index. While iShares Core S&P 500 ETF has $289.66 billion in assets, SPDR S&P 500 ETF has $379.46 billion. IVV has an expense ratio of 0.03% and SPY charges 0.09%.

Bottom-Line

Passively managed ETFs are becoming increasingly popular with institutional as well as retail investors due to their low cost, transparency, flexibility and tax efficiency. They are 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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Franklin LibertyQ U.S. Equity ETF (FLQL): ETF Research Reports
 
Eli Lilly and Company (LLY) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
NVIDIA Corporation (NVDA) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Adobe Inc. (ADBE) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY): ETF Research Reports
 
iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV): ETF Research Reports
 
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