Equity: U.S. - Small Cap

CSA Top Performer Intra-day
Price $45.51
Today’s Change +0.54%(1.20)
9:33am 10/20/2017
XSHD Bottom Performer Intra-day
Price $25.38
Today’s Change -0.01%(-0.04)
4:00pm 10/20/2017
  • Overview
  • Efficiency
  • Tradability
  • Fit

ETF.com Insight

The US small-cap equity space is crowded—20+ funds offer some take on small-caps, be it straight-ahead market-cap, an index-based strategy or active management.

Far and awayin some cases, tracking differences blur the distinction between fees the most popular small-cap ETFs are those tracking market-weight indexes: the Russell 2000 and S&P 600. In fact, three of the market-weight funds (IWM, IJR and VB) together dominate small-cap assets. The rest of the assets are split between lesser-known market-cap funds, fundamentals-focused strategies and alpha-seeking funds.

The good news for small-cap investors is the top funds in the space capture the market return at extremely low cost. Taking the largest small-cap ETF as an example, IWM offers exposure to nearly 2,000 stocks with excellent liquidity, at typical holding costs lower than its fee. Vanguard’s VB, which tracks 1,500 stocks in a CRSP index, also tends to cost even less than its low fee.

What distinguishes the large number of market-weight ETFs from each other? Often, the answer is “very little.” Expense ratios and liquidity are the main distinguishing factors, and in some cases, tracking differences blur the distinction between fees. Investors here can choose their favorite index and are still likely to get an excellent price and deep liquidity.

The small-cap ETFs tracking alternative indexes are a little more varied. The remaining funds offer niche strategies in everything from dividend weighted, revenue weighted, to so-called 'core' indexes. Some of these funds are barely a blip on the radar, asset-wise, but others, like the WisdomTree SmallCap Dividend ETF (DES), have attracted hundreds of millions. The less popular of these ETFs often have serious liquidity concerns, so keep an eye on the Tradability score of anything that looks appealing.

Those that prefer active management have 1 choice (IESM), but assets and liquidity are weak for the relatively new fund. (Insight updated 10/20/17)

All Funds (45)

SCHA $6.16 B 6159333009.45 very low all-in costs

A 92
E
100
100
T
98
98
F
92
92

VB $19.94 B 19943595181.24 dirt-cheap all-in costs

A 92
E
99
99
T
99
99
F
92
92

FNDA $2.38 B 2380289832.6 viable assets and liquidity

A 88
E
97
97
T
97
97
F
88
88

SPSM $252.2 M 252197167.2 lags IWM and VTWO in liquidity

A 84
E
98
98
T
77
77
F
84
84

VTWO $1.16 B 1163955000 rock solid but lags IWM in liquidiy

A 84
E
97
97
T
97
97
F
84
84

IWM $41.73 B 41731387500 Extremely large & liquid

A 84
E
99
99
T
98
98
F
84
84

JKJ $250.44 M 250438350 not as liquid as some

A 83
E
97
97
T
71
71
F
83
83

SLY $814.59 M 814585485.16355 IJR is more liquid

A 78
E
98
98
T
88
88
F
78
78

VIOO $705.74 M 705744000 Decent but eclipsed by IJR

A 78
E
97
97
T
97
97
F
78
78

IJR $33.89 B 33889525600 Trades easily

A 78
E
100
100
T
98
98
F
78
78

DES $2.02 B 2020520040 stable and liquid

A 73
E
92
92
T
95
95
F
73
73

SMLV $217.63 M 217626599.25 Low AUM, low trading volume

A 72
E
99
99
T
66
66
F
72
72

EES $525.71 M 525712265 tracks its index well

A 70
E
94
94
T
84
84
F
70
70

XSLV $1.06 B 1061725250 Low Volatility

A 66
E
97
97
T
92
92
F
66
66

PSC $287.33 M 287330880.087 N/A

B 80
E
92
92
T
54
54
F
80
80

FYX $534.77 M 534773668.182 very expensive to hold

B 74
E
87
87
T
93
93
F
74
74

CSF $67.83 M 67830790 Low-vol market timer

B 74
E
87
87
T
67
67
F
74
74

EQWS $23.16 M 23162150 paltry assets

B 73
E
90
90
T
59
59
F
73
73

EWSC $31.48 M 31484400 same index as EQWS

B 70
E
88
88
T
58
58
F
70
70

DGRS $102.01 M 102005395 investor interest still weak

B 68
E
93
93
T
70
70
F
68
68

DWAS $223.25 M 223250000 popular but not cheap to hold

B 59
E
91
91
T
82
82
F
59
59

RWJ $495.08 M 495082238.42 high holding costs

B 55
E
87
87
T
88
88
F
55
55

SMMV $10.0 M 9999325 N/A

C 58
E
85
85
T
60
60
F
58
58

SCAP $4.71 M 4706523.61884 N/A

D 74
E
68
68
T
49
49
F
74
74

OUSM $51.66 M 51662978.4 N/A

D 33
E
57
57
T
72
72
F
33
33

NUSC $24.89 M 24890040 N/A

F 92
E
56
56
T
52
52
F
92
92

XSHQ $1.3 M 1297725.954 N/A

F 62
E
57
57
T
30
30
F
62
62

PBSM $2.59 M 2590625.906 N/A

F 59
E
53
53
T
0
-1
F
59
59

XSHD $7.57 M 7573225.244 N/A

F 46
E
56
56
T
50
50
F
46
46

JPSE $41.37 M 41369076.898968 N/A

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

CSA $31.37 M 31369520 higher fee

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

CSML $250.44 M 250444677.371 N/A

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

CSB $44.8 M 44796255 N/A

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

DESC $10.14 M 10140633.802 N/A

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

CALF $3.77 M 3772500 N/A

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

SMDV $455.42 M 455418750 low assets, weak liquidity

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

RNSC $2.1 M 2098976.9787 N/A

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

SMLF $59.6 M 59596880 New; trade with care

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

GSSC $10.58 M 10577500 N/A

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

SQLV $2.62 M 2616650 N/A

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

FLQS $3.86 M 3859500 N/A

N/A 0
E
0
-1
T
0
-1
F
0
-1

TWOK $256.38 M 256384652.9 lags IWM and VTWO in liquidity

A 84
E
98
98
T
77
77
F
84
84

ZSML $1.34 M 1344500 Looks for companies with the biggest earnings increases

F 68
E
54
54
T
39
39
F
68
68

IESM $8.36 M 8361150 thin investor interest

C 78
E
84
84
T
58
58
F
78
78

EWRS $35.93 M 35931000 same index as EQWS

B 72
E
87
87
T
59
59
F
72
72

ETF.com Grade as 10/12/17

Equity: U.S. - Small Cap

Performance Dispersion
Performance  [as of 10/19/17] 1 Month 3 Month YTD 1 Year 3 Years 5 Years 10 Years
Benchmark: MSCI USA Small Cap3.87%4.43%13.09%23.41%12.96%15.05%9.38%
A 92.410493SCHA6159333009.45SCHASchwab U.S. Small-Cap ETF--------------
A 92.13344VB19943595181.24VBVanguard Small-Cap ETF--------------
A 87.546343FNDA2380289832.6FNDASchwab Fundamental US Small Co. Index ETF--------------
A 84.188735SPSM252197167.2SPSMSPDR Portfolio Small Cap ETF --------------
A 84.044937VTWO1163955000VTWOVanguard Russell 2000 ETF--------------
A 84.03011IWM41731387500IWMiShares Russell 2000 ETF--------------
A 82.776387JKJ250438350JKJiShares Morningstar Small-Cap ETF--------------
A 77.861046SLY814585485.16355SLYSPDR S&P 600 Small Cap ETF--------------
A 77.748305VIOO705744000VIOOVanguard S&P Small-Cap 600 ETF--------------
A 77.712469IJR33889525600IJRiShares Core S&P Small Cap ETF--------------
A 73.066475DES2020520040DESWisdomTree U.S. SmallCap Dividend Fund--------------
A 71.929941SMLV217626599.25SMLVSPDR SSGA U.S. Small Cap Low Volatility Index ETF--------------
A 69.66247EES525712265EESWisdomTree U.S. SmallCap Earnings Fund--------------
A 65.633444XSLV1061725250XSLVPowerShares S&P SmallCap Low Volatility Portfolio--------------
B 79.950807PSC287330880.087PSCPrincipal U.S. Small Cap Index ETF6.92%3.75%9.66%21.77%------
B 74.441661FYX534773668.182FYXFirst Trust Small Cap Core AlphaDEX Fund--------------
B 74.265578CSF67830790CSFVictoryShares US Discovery Enhanced Volatility Weighted Index ETF--------------
B 72.605787EQWS23162150EQWSPowerShares Russell 2000 Equal Weight Portfolio--------------
B 70.38034EWSC31484400EWSCGuggenheim S&P SmallCap 600 Equal Weight ETF--------------
B 67.597492DGRS102005395DGRSWisdomTree U.S. Smallcap Quality Dividend Growth Fund--------------
B 58.72932DWAS223250000DWASPowerShares DWA SmallCap Momentum Portfolio--------------
B 54.597266RWJ495082238.42RWJOppenheimer Small Cap Revenue ETF--------------
C 58.070354SMMV9999325SMMViShares Edge MSCI Min Vol USA Small-Cap ETF--------------
D 73.521264SCAP4706523.61884SCAPAdvisorShares Cornerstone Small Cap ETF--------------
D 33.38202OUSM51662978.4OUSMO'Shares FTSE Russell Small Cap Quality Dividend ETF--------------
F 92.080129NUSC24890040NUSCNuShares ESG Small-Cap ETF--------------
F 62.096054XSHQ1297725.954XSHQPowerShares S&P SmallCap Quality Portfolio--------------
F 58.991716PBSM2590625.906PBSMPowerShares PureBeta MSCI U.S.A Small Cap Portfolio--------------
F 45.888665XSHD7573225.244XSHDPowerShares S&P SmallCap High Dividend Low Volatility Portfolio--------------
N/A 0CSA31369520CSAVictoryShares US Small Cap Volatility Wtd Index ETF--------------
N/A 0JPSE41369076.898968JPSEJPMorgan Diversified Return U.S. Small Cap Equity ETF4.23%5.89%10.79%--------
N/A 0CSML250444677.371CSMLIQ Chaikin U.S. Small Cap ETF--------------
N/A 0CSB44796255CSBVictoryShares US Small Cap High Div Volatility Wtd ETF--------------
N/A 0DESC10140633.802DESCDeutsche X-trackers Russell 2000 Comprehensive Factor ETF--------------
N/A 0CALF3772500CALFPacer U.S. Small Cap Cash Cows 100 ETF--------------
N/A 0SMDV455418750SMDVProShares Russell 2000 Dividend Growers ETF--------------
N/A 0RNSC2098976.9787RNSCFirst Trust Small Cap U.S. Equity Select ETF--------------
N/A 0SMLF59596880SMLFiShares Edge MSCI Multifactor USA Small-Cap ETF--------------
N/A 0GSSC10577500GSSCGoldman Sachs ActiveBeta U.S. Small Cap Equity ETF--------------
N/A 0SQLV2616650SQLVLegg Mason Small-Cap Quality Value ETF--------------
N/A 0FLQS3859500FLQSFranklin LibertyQ U.S. Small Cap Equity ETF--------------
A 84.188735TWOK256384652.9TWOKSPDR Russell 2000 ETF5.52%6.41%12.15%25.67%14.39%----
F 67.528426ZSML1344500ZSMLETFS Zacks Earnings Small-Cap U.S. Index Fund5.28%14.69%-4.28%32.80%------
C 78.062121909754IESM8361150IESMiShares Enhanced US Small-Cap ETF2.65%11.34%13.46%12.25%7.95%----
B 71.940939152313EWRS35931000EWRSGuggenheim Russell 2000 Equal Weight-13.64%-18.45%-14.72%-20.44%1.32%2.67%--
All returns over 1 year are annualized. All returns are total returns unless otherwise stated.

ETF.com Efficiency Insight

Fee wars among ETF issuers have driven holding costs down. Small-cap ETFs holding hundreds of stocks are now available for under 15 basis points annually. Low fees are a positiveSCHA's actual holding cost is even lower than its fee contributor to great tracking and to actual investor holding costs. Securities-lending revenue and turnover due to non-cap-weighted strategies also drive tracking performance.

SCHA and VB stand out as low-fee leaders charging under 10 bps. Amazingly, each fund’s actual holding cost (as measured by median tracking difference) is even lower than its fee to the point where the funds are effectively free to hold.

GURX, ZSML and FYX stand out at the other extreme with the segment’s highest fees. Actual holding costs for these are higher still, approaching 100 bps.

Such cost differences count for a lot in the case of large, multiyear allocations.

Costs and tracking differences certainly vary among the funds, but so do risks, especially the risk that an ETF will close due to lack of interest. Several small-cap funds have tiny asset bases, and could be shut down by their issuers. (Other metrics beyond AUM also go into our qualitative risk level.) Specifically, watch out for SMLV, DGRS and PXSC. If a fund does close, rarely do investors lose the value of their investment, but closure does typically trigger a tax event for holders of the ETF, and investors must cope with reinvestment. All things equal, it’s clearly preferable to invest in a stable fund.

Tracking risks aren’t a consideration for the segment’s lone actively-managed fund, IESM. Still, investors here should keep a watchful eye on the funds slender asset base.

One last caveat: Investors should look beyond holdings costs as a proxy for all-in costs when choosing an ETF in this space. Trading costs can quickly outweigh the savings from choosing cheaper but less liquid funds, especially when the fee difference is a handful of basis points for shorter holding periods. (Insight updated 10/20/17)

All Funds (45)

99
99.481721
99
98.924343
99
98.816252
98
98.032144
98
98.009706
97
97.144466
97
97.142427
97
96.901795
97
96.845938
97
96.666452
94
93.749312
93
93.272576
92
91.700346
92
91.618157
91
90.507311
90
89.981376
88
87.996298
87
87.428855
87
87.185311
87
86.630181
85
85.128997
68
68.227988
57
57.44221
57
56.961108
56
56.346321
56
55.837838
53
53.241042
100
100
100
100
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
98
98.032144
54
54.11577
84
83.629378793993
87
87.007897976144

ETF.com Grade as 10/12/17

Equity: U.S. - Small Cap

Tracking Difference (12 Month)

Ticker Expense Ratio Median Max. Upside Max. Downside Max LT/ST Cap Gains Rate Rule Legal Structure Fund Closure Risk Efficiency
JPSE JPMorgan Diversified Return U.S. Small Cap Equity ETF 0.29% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% High 0
CSA VictoryShares US Small Cap Volatility Wtd Index ETF 0.35% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Medium 0
PBSM PowerShares PureBeta MSCI U.S.A Small Cap Portfolio 0.06% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% High 53.241042
VB Vanguard Small-Cap ETF 0.06% 0.04% 0.07% 0.02% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 99.481721
XSHD PowerShares S&P SmallCap High Dividend Low Volatility Portfolio 0.30% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% High 55.837838
CSB VictoryShares US Small Cap High Div Volatility Wtd ETF 0.35% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 0
SPSM SPDR Portfolio Small Cap ETF 0.05% 0.06% 0.30% -0.05% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 98.032144
IJR iShares Core S&P Small Cap ETF 0.07% -0.06% 0.04% -0.12% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 100
VIOO Vanguard S&P Small-Cap 600 ETF 0.15% 0.06% 0.14% -0.09% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 97.144466
NUSC NuShares ESG Small-Cap ETF 0.40% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% High 56.346321
CSF VictoryShares US Discovery Enhanced Volatility Weighted Index ETF 0.38% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 86.630181
IWM iShares Russell 2000 ETF 0.20% 0.04% 0.11% -0.00% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 98.924343
VTWO Vanguard Russell 2000 ETF 0.15% 0.03% 0.06% -0.01% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 97.142427
OUSM O'Shares FTSE Russell Small Cap Quality Dividend ETF 0.48% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 56.961108
DES WisdomTree U.S. SmallCap Dividend Fund 0.38% -0.36% -0.14% -0.44% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 91.618157
JKJ iShares Morningstar Small-Cap ETF 0.25% -0.21% -0.07% -0.33% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 96.666452
XSLV PowerShares S&P SmallCap Low Volatility Portfolio 0.25% -0.29% -0.23% -0.40% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 96.845938
XSHQ PowerShares S&P SmallCap Quality Portfolio 0.29% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% High 57.44221
DGRS WisdomTree U.S. Smallcap Quality Dividend Growth Fund 0.38% -0.31% -0.13% -0.43% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 93.272576
RWJ Oppenheimer Small Cap Revenue ETF 0.39% -0.60% -0.42% -1.16% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 87.428855
FLQS Franklin LibertyQ U.S. Small Cap Equity ETF 0.35% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 0
DWAS PowerShares DWA SmallCap Momentum Portfolio 0.60% -0.63% -0.51% -0.73% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 90.507311
SCHA Schwab U.S. Small-Cap ETF 0.05% 0.01% 0.07% -0.04% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 100
EWSC Guggenheim S&P SmallCap 600 Equal Weight ETF 0.41% -0.29% -0.22% -0.70% 20.00% / 39.60% High 87.996298
CSML IQ Chaikin U.S. Small Cap ETF 0.35% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 0
EES WisdomTree U.S. SmallCap Earnings Fund 0.38% -0.27% -0.08% -0.37% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 93.749312
SLY SPDR S&P 600 Small Cap ETF 0.15% -0.07% 0.01% -0.16% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 98.009706
DESC Deutsche X-trackers Russell 2000 Comprehensive Factor ETF 0.30% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% High 0
CALF Pacer U.S. Small Cap Cash Cows 100 ETF 0.59% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 0
EQWS PowerShares Russell 2000 Equal Weight Portfolio 0.25% -0.35% -0.25% -0.44% 20.00% / 39.60% High 89.981376
SMDV ProShares Russell 2000 Dividend Growers ETF 0.40% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 0
SCAP AdvisorShares Cornerstone Small Cap ETF 0.90% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% High 68.227988
RNSC First Trust Small Cap U.S. Equity Select ETF 0.60% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 0
SMLF iShares Edge MSCI Multifactor USA Small-Cap ETF 0.30% -0.66% -0.26% -0.87% 20.00% / 39.60% Medium 0
SMMV iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol USA Small-Cap ETF 0.20% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% High 85.128997
GSSC Goldman Sachs ActiveBeta U.S. Small Cap Equity ETF 0.20% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 0
FNDA Schwab Fundamental US Small Co. Index ETF 0.25% -0.27% -0.21% -0.41% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 96.901795
SMLV SPDR SSGA U.S. Small Cap Low Volatility Index ETF 0.12% -0.16% 0.16% -0.34% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 98.816252
PSC Principal U.S. Small Cap Index ETF 0.38% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 91.700346
SQLV Legg Mason Small-Cap Quality Value ETF 0.60% -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Low 0
FYX First Trust Small Cap Core AlphaDEX Fund 0.64% -0.52% -0.45% -0.66% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 87.185311
TWOK SPDR Russell 2000 ETF 0.06% 0.30% -0.05% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 98.032144
ZSML ETFS Zacks Earnings Small-Cap U.S. Index Fund -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Closing 54.11577
IESM iShares Enhanced US Small-Cap ETF -- -- -- 20.00% / 39.60% Closing 83.629378793993
EWRS Guggenheim Russell 2000 Equal Weight -0.13% 0.02% -0.39% 20.00% / 39.60% Low 87.007897976144

ETF.com Tradability Insight

Tradability can determine whether a small-cap ETF is truly investment-worthy or not. Several funds with otherwise-attractive strategies and efficient management trade at large spreads. TheIWM trades more than $3B most days, a massive sum cost of a bad trade can far outweigh the small differences in annual fees between competing ETFs.

The largest funds here provide some of the best liquidity that ETFs have to offer. IWM, iShares Russell 2000 ETF, trades well more than $3B most days—a massive sum—at penny-wide spreads. In fact, all three of the top-trading small-cap funds (IWM, IJR and VB) trade huge amounts daily, and will absorb institutional-size trades with little impact. To be sure, these funds offer outstanding Tradability for retail-sized orders too.

However, watch out for the funds that occupy the other end of the liquidity spectrum. For instance, PXSC trades at very thin volumes—under 1,000 shares most days—and spreads are wide. Placing a market order in such a fund is a recipe for high cost execution.

Poor liquidity isn’t confined to more esoteric strategies— plain-vanilla funds like TWOK (the SPDR Russell 2000) trade thinly, so double-check Tradability scores even if the fund sounds safe. All told, poor liquidity can add significant cost—and time spent—to the investment. The silver lining in the US small-cap segment is that the primary liquidity of these ETFs tends to be high, so if you can place large transactions through a liquidity provider, you’re still likely to get a fair price. Institutional traders should nonetheless check for potential price impact for creates and redeems (via underlying volume/unit), as funds like SMLV, IESM and XSLV have less liquid underlying names. (Insight updated 10/20/17)

All Funds (45)

99
98.828965
98
98.191605
98
98.067081
98
97.919759
97
97.472281
97
97.288754
97
96.565641
95
95.236
93
93.197275
92
92.423008
88
88.338214
88
87.937128
84
83.501274
82
82.336383
77
76.821007
72
72.467064
71
71.140576
70
69.755112
67
66.552416
66
65.785034
60
60.034867
59
58.686409
58
58.391507
54
54.193582
52
51.512608
50
49.603339
49
48.924448
30
29.65679
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
77
76.821007
39
39.34955
58
57.52387108872
59
59.346433883911

ETF.com Grade as 10/12/17

Equity: U.S. - Small Cap

Ticker Median Daily Volume ($) Average Spread Creation Unit/Day Market Hours Overlap Underlying Volume/Unit % Creation Cost Per Unit (%) Impediment to Creations Score - Tradability
CSA VictoryShares US Small Cap Volatility Wtd Index ETF $41.87 K 0.30% 0.02 100.00% 0.10% 0.03% None 0
SCHA Schwab U.S. Small-Cap ETF $18.33 M 0.05% 5.57 100.00% 0.02% 0.04% None 97.919759
JPSE JPMorgan Diversified Return U.S. Small Cap Equity ETF $96.4 K 0.23% 0.07 100.00% 0.04% 0.17% None 0
CSB VictoryShares US Small Cap High Div Volatility Wtd ETF $193.02 K 0.26% 0.10 100.00% 0.49% 0.01% None 0
SLY SPDR S&P 600 Small Cap ETF $1.64 M 0.19% 0.27 100.00% 0.16% 0.05% None 88.338214
XSHD PowerShares S&P SmallCap High Dividend Low Volatility Portfolio $42.59 K 0.51% 0.03 100.00% 0.49% 0.04% None 49.603339
CSF VictoryShares US Discovery Enhanced Volatility Weighted Index ETF $210.92 K 0.27% 0.10 100.00% 0.09% 0.03% None 66.552416
SMDV ProShares Russell 2000 Dividend Growers ETF $1.59 M 0.11% 1.15 100.00% 0.52% 0.02% None 0
NUSC NuShares ESG Small-Cap ETF $29.16 K 0.61% 0.02 100.00% 0.02% 0.04% None 51.512608
DES WisdomTree U.S. SmallCap Dividend Fund $4.73 M 0.07% 1.20 100.00% 0.19% 0.04% None 95.236
SMLF iShares Edge MSCI Multifactor USA Small-Cap ETF $109.42 K 0.35% 0.06 100.00% 0.05% 0.08% None 0
OUSM O'Shares FTSE Russell Small Cap Quality Dividend ETF $311.23 K 0.19% 0.24 100.00% 0.04% 0.04% None 72.467064
DGRS WisdomTree U.S. Smallcap Quality Dividend Growth Fund $263.1 K 0.19% 0.16 100.00% 0.16% 0.03% None 69.755112
SMLV SPDR SSGA U.S. Small Cap Low Volatility Index ETF $482.38 K 0.28% 0.11 100.00% 0.68% 0.01% None 65.785034
XSHQ PowerShares S&P SmallCap Quality Portfolio $0 0.65% 0 100.00% 0.17% 0.04% None 29.65679
DWAS PowerShares DWA SmallCap Momentum Portfolio $1.02 M 0.30% 0.45 100.00% 0.38% 0.02% None 82.336383
FLQS Franklin LibertyQ U.S. Small Cap Equity ETF $0 0.24% 0 100.00% 0.04% 0.10% None 0
EES WisdomTree U.S. SmallCap Earnings Fund $859.06 K 0.22% 0.52 100.00% 0.08% 0.14% None 83.501274
VB Vanguard Small-Cap ETF $58.89 M 0.04% 16.94 100.00% 0.02% 0.01% None 98.828965
CSML IQ Chaikin U.S. Small Cap ETF $1.27 M 0.20% 0.98 100.00% 0.19% 0.05% None 0
EQWS PowerShares Russell 2000 Equal Weight Portfolio $32.57 K 0.38% 0.01 100.00% 0.09% 0.05% None 58.686409
VIOO Vanguard S&P Small-Cap 600 ETF $2.9 M 0.04% 0.85 100.00% 0.08% 0.01% None 97.472281
CALF Pacer U.S. Small Cap Cash Cows 100 ETF $12.59 K 0.31% 0.01 100.00% 0.23% 0.02% None 0
VTWO Vanguard Russell 2000 ETF $4.59 M 0.09% 1.62 100.00% 0.05% 0.03% None 96.565641
RNSC First Trust Small Cap U.S. Equity Select ETF $10.33 K 0.30% 0.01 100.00% 0.10% 0.13% None 0
FNDA Schwab Fundamental US Small Co. Index ETF $6.38 M 0.08% 3.68 100.00% 0.02% 0.03% None 97.288754
XSLV PowerShares S&P SmallCap Low Volatility Portfolio $3.87 M 0.10% 1.75 100.00% 0.37% 0.02% None 92.423008
GSSC Goldman Sachs ActiveBeta U.S. Small Cap Equity ETF $21.98 K 0.18% 0.01 100.00% 0.10% 0.14% None 0
FYX First Trust Small Cap Core AlphaDEX Fund $1.36 M 0.11% 0.48 100.00% 0.08% 0.02% None 93.197275
SQLV Legg Mason Small-Cap Quality Value ETF $12.27 K 0.21% 0.01 100.00% 0.20% 0.04% None 0
EWSC Guggenheim S&P SmallCap 600 Equal Weight ETF $95.61 K 0.38% 0.04 100.00% 0.11% 0.11% None 58.391507
PBSM PowerShares PureBeta MSCI U.S.A Small Cap Portfolio $0 0.53% 0 100.00% 0.01% 0.12% N/A 0
IJR iShares Core S&P Small Cap ETF $143.65 M 0.02% 41.26 100.00% 0.09% 0.04% None 98.067081
DESC Deutsche X-trackers Russell 2000 Comprehensive Factor ETF $23.59 K 0.11% 0.00 100.00% 0.08% 0.12% None 0
SPSM SPDR Portfolio Small Cap ETF $582.59 K 0.24% 0.43 100.00% 0.01% 0.03% None 76.821007
IWM iShares Russell 2000 ETF $2.86 B 0.01% 402.05 100.00% 0.07% 0.04% None 98.191605
SCAP AdvisorShares Cornerstone Small Cap ETF $5.39 K 0.66% 0.00 100.00% 0.07% 0.06% None 48.924448
JKJ iShares Morningstar Small-Cap ETF $261.57 K 0.09% 0.03 100.00% 0.25% 0.01% None 71.140576
SMMV iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol USA Small-Cap ETF $45.71 K 0.35% 0.03 100.00% 0.05% 0.08% None 60.034867
RWJ Oppenheimer Small Cap Revenue ETF $1.61 M 0.15% 0.51 100.00% 0.33% 0.09% None 87.937128
PSC Principal U.S. Small Cap Index ETF $0 0.47% 0 100.00% 0.05% 0.10% None 54.193582
TWOK SPDR Russell 2000 ETF $582.62 K 0.14 100.00% 0.04% 0.06% None 76.821007
ZSML ETFS Zacks Earnings Small-Cap U.S. Index Fund $0 0.00 100.00% 0.02% 0.02% None 39.34955
IESM iShares Enhanced US Small-Cap ETF $102.89 K 0.06 100.00% 0.00% 0.06% None 57.52387108872
EWRS Guggenheim Russell 2000 Equal Weight $134.43 K 0.07 98.00% 0.09% 0.17% None 59.346433883911

ETF.com/ Block Liquidity

JPSE
5
4
3
2
1
CSF
5
4
3
2
1
OUSM
5
4
3
2
1
DES
5
4
3
2
1
DWAS
5
4
3
2
1
CSML
5
4
3
2
1
EES
5
4
3
2
1
FNDA
5
4
3
2
1
FYX
5
4
3
2
1
SPSM
5
4
3
2
1
IJR
5
4
3
2
1
IWM
5
4
3
2
1
JKJ
5
4
3
2
1
RWJ
5
4
3
2
1
SCHA
5
4
3
2
1
SLY
5
4
3
2
1
SMLF
5
4
3
2
1
SMLV
5
4
3
2
1
VB
5
4
3
2
1
VIOO
5
4
3
2
1
VTWO
5
4
3
2
1
XSLV
5
4
3
2
1
CSA
5
4
3
2
1
CSB
5
4
3
2
1
NUSC
5
4
3
2
1
XSHQ
5
4
3
2
1
DGRS
5
4
3
2
1
FLQS
5
4
3
2
1
CALF
5
4
3
2
1
EQWS
5
4
3
2
1
RNSC
5
4
3
2
1
GSSC
5
4
3
2
1
SQLV
5
4
3
2
1
SMDV
5
4
3
2
1
EWSC
5
4
3
2
1
DESC
5
4
3
2
1
SCAP
5
4
3
2
1
SMMV
5
4
3
2
1
PSC
5
4
3
2
1
XSHD
5
4
3
2
1
PBSM
5
4
3
2
1
TWOK
5
4
3
2
1
ZSML
5
4
3
2
1
IESM
5
4
3
2
1
EWRS
5
4
3
2
1

This measurement shows how easy it is to trade 25,000 shares of each ETF.

ETF.com Fit Insight

No matter what kind of small-cap exposure investors are looking for, there are plenty of ETF options. Choices range from those that simply capture the market return to funds delivering aThe Russell 2000 is an excellent index for capturing the small-cap market range of niche strategies and alternate weightings.

Among those offering the market return, a few names stand out. The Vanguard Small-Cap ETF (VB) earns the highest score here, tracking a comprehensive CRSP index that holds roughly 1,500 small-cap stocks. Schwab’s SCHA also earns high marks, tracking a Dow Jones Index of over 2,000 stocks. Surprisingly, funds tracking the Russell 2000 Index, including the asset-behemoth IWM, don’t earn a great Fit score. That has more to do with our benchmark for small-caps (which tends to lean toward larger stocks) than it does with any shortcoming of the Russell 2000 Index. Don’t let the score throw you off here: The Russell 2000 is an excellent index for capturing the small-cap market.

Choices abound among alternative strategies as well. Most of them don’t score favorably in Fit because they don’t aim to provide the market return or provide vanilla exposure. But low Fit scores don’t mean these funds don’t provide valuable exposure. WisdomTree’s Small-Cap Dividend Fund (DES) is a diversified and small-leaning fund that weights its holdings according to dividend. DES’ higher cash flows, coupled with the capital appreciation potential of small-caps, sounds appealing, but be sure you’re comfortable with its exposure tilts, and know also that some dividend strategies have lagged in total return over the past year.

Also popular are so-called core funds, which hold only those stocks that fall in the middle of the style spectrum between growth and value. The iShares Morningstar Small Core (JKJ), the PowerShares Fundamental Pure Small Core (PXSC) and the First Trust Small Cap Core AlphaDex (FYX) all offer some flavor of that methodology.

Equal-weighted methodologies have gained less traction here than in other ETF segments. GURX equal-weights its copycat holdings while EWRS equal weights by sectors and then by stocks within the sector.

IESM is the lone actively managed fund in the segment. So far performance has lagged as the fund reaches deep into the microcap space.

 (Insight updated 10/20/17)

All Funds (45)

92
92.410493
92
92.13344
92
92.080129
88
87.546343
84
84.188735
84
84.044937
84
84.03011
83
82.776387
80
79.950807
78
77.861046
78
77.748305
78
77.712469
74
74.441661
74
74.265578
74
73.521264
73
73.066475
73
72.605787
72
71.929941
70
70.38034
70
69.66247
68
67.597492
66
65.633444
62
62.096054
59
58.991716
59
58.72932
58
58.070354
55
54.597266
46
45.888665
33
33.38202
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
N/A
0
84
84.188735
68
67.528426
78
78.062121909754
72
71.940939152313

ETF.com Grade as 10/12/17

Equity: U.S. - Small Cap