This ETF offers exposure to mid cap stocks that exhibit value characteristics, making IWS a potentially useful tool for investors looking to fine tune their domestic equity exposure or implement a tilt towards a specific investment style. Investors constructing a long-term portfolio would be better off with a fund such as MDY or IJH that includes greater depth of holdings and a mix of various styles. Value strategies often come with biases towards specific sectors, and may outperform more broadly-based indexes in certain economic environments such as recessions. It should be noted that there is often considerable overlap between this fund and its growth counterpart, the result of a methodology that uses a generous definition of value stocks. Rydex offers a pure style alternative, RFV, that is slightly more expensive but will offer a considerably more targeted focus on value equities. Those seeking to make a meaningful tilt in their portfolio would be better served by using that fund. It should also be noted that JKI and MDYV seek to replicate similar indexes at comparable expense ratios. IWS is a fine ETF, but there are a number of alternatives out there that offer more compelling methodologies, or potentially better execution.
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