Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 61

announced company earnings at this point still only include business results during the strong economy up to the end of September, reported earnings should be near a peak for most companies. If the stock’s price/earnings ratio has cratered, the market likely believes the company is distressed or will lose much of its former profitability in the future. Neither scenario bodes well for the future of those companies’ dividends. With the S&P 500 trading around a P/E of 10, we consider that a portfolio P/E ratio of 7.5 (about half the long-run average) should be sufficient to ensure that we are not buying a dangerously distressed set of stocks. And Morningstar Rating > {{{{ As of Dec. 5, 2008, this screen produced five options from our ETF universe. In addition to the usual suspects in the utilities sector, this screen also highlighted beaten-down telecoms with their strong cash flows as a source of reliable yields. Top-quality multinationals with their unbeatable brands and solid balance sheets also provide a promising area to find sustainable dividends. Here are four recommended ETFs uncovered by our screen. iShares S&P Global Telecommunications IXP high-bandwidth, or fiber-optic cable networks. The index is so concentrated that the ETF has to modify the weightings of its largest holdings to comply with IRS diversification rules, with AT&T T and Verizon VZ comprising more than 40% of the portfolio. Utilities Select Sector SPDR XLU And P/E Ratio > 7.5 With ETFs, liquidity remains another critical factor to consider. If an ETF is too small or trades too infrequently, it can be very difficult to buy or sell shares at their fair value. Thankfully, you do not need to limit yourself to the largest funds in order to find sufficient liquidity for trades of thousands or tens of thousands of dollars. We generally find that ETFs develop sufficient liquidity for the individual investor after they reach assets under management of $50 million or more. And Net Assets $ MM > 50 Finally, we want to look for ETFs with low fees that will not eat up all that yield. No single fee cut-off will work for this broad set of funds because sector-specific and international funds will often cost more than broad-based domestic ETFs. However, as virtually all of these funds track indexes, the main way that ETFs achieve 4-star performance against their mutual fund peer group is through low fees that allow investors to capture more of the portfolio’s return. So as a proxy for low fees, we will search for ETFs with Morningstar Ratings of 4 stars or higher. Although it has a portfolio of about 44 stocks, iShares S&P Global Telecommunications is very top-heavy thanks to its market-cap-weighted structure. In fact, the fund’s top 10 holdings soak up approximately 70% of total assets. We’re not deterred by the fund’s heavy concentration, however, as its top holdings represent some of the global industry’s top-tier franchises that boast diverse product portfolios and geographic exposure. At the end of the day, we think demand for phone, television, and Internet connectivity will continue to expand. The worldwide exposure afforded by the fund is another big positive, as investors can partake in emerging markets’ rapid adoption of telecom services without assuming single-stock or single-country risk. In our view, some of the best-in-class telecom firms are trading at compelling valuations (already pricing in dire forecasts), offer above-average dividend yields, and have the capital and cash-generating ability to meet their near-term obligations and maintain dividend payments. Vanguard Telecom Services ETF VOX This market-weighted ETF owns the utilities stocks in the S&P 500, giving it a large-cap portfolio. The top-heavy portfolio has nearly 60% of assets invested in the top 10 names, but these include diverse utilities providing companies providing water, electric, and natural-gas service. Because of the government protection of the utilities sector and utilities’ strong pricing power within their natural monopolies, we have little concern that this ETF will not maintain its healthy 4% yield. iShares S&P Global 100 Index IOO Although this ETF only covers U.S. telecommunications companies, it also charges a slim 0.23% expense ratio that is less than half the cost of its global rival from iShares. This ETF tracks the MSCI U.S. Investable Telecommunications Services Index, an all-cap marketweighted index that holds fewer than 50 stocks from U.S. companies offering communications services through fixed-line, cellular, wireless, This ETF offers one-stop shopping for a passel of well-known multinationals. The S&P Global 100 represents roughly 100 multinational companies with a minimum market capitalization of $5 billion, and it defines multinational firms as those with production facilities and other fixed assets in at least one nation besides its home country pursuant to a global strategy. In addition to the market-cap minimum, each constituent must meet certain liquidity and financial viability requirements. S&P then adjusts the portfolio to mirror the sector weightings of the S&P Global 1200 Index. The resulting portfolio parks more than 90% of assets in giant-cap stocks, with most hailing from the United States, United Kingdom, and France. The unbeatable quality of the companies that this fund holds, along with its wide sector and stock diversification, ensures that its already-excellent 5% yield will probably only grow in the years to come. Bradley Kay and John Gabriel are ETF analysts with Morningstar. MorningstarAdvisor.com 61
http://www.MorningstarAdvisor.com

Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009

Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009
Contents
New on MorningstarAdvisor.com
Letter from the Editor
Contributors
Inbox
How Do You Gauge and Measure Risk?
No Skinny-Dippers Here
Heading to Shore
Investment Briefs
Weapons of Mass Destruction?
Déjà Vu All Over Again
A Failure to Gauge Risk
Five Areas to Find Opportunities
Getting a Read on Risk
Heavenly Returns
Greenspring Comes to the Rescue
How to Spot a Trustworthy REIT
Four Picks for the President
Find Succor in These Large Dividends
These Stocks Are Fiscally Fit
Mutual Fund Analyst Picks
50 Most Popular Equity ETFs
Undervalued Stocks
Most Popular Variable Annuities
New at Morningstar
You Gotta Look Sharpe
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Intro
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Cover2
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 1
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 2
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Contents
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 4
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 5
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - New on MorningstarAdvisor.com
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 7
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 8
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Letter from the Editor
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Contributors
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Inbox
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - How Do You Gauge and Measure Risk?
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 13
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - No Skinny-Dippers Here
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 15
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 16
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Heading to Shore
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 18
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 19
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Investment Briefs
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 21
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Weapons of Mass Destruction?
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 23
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 24
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 25
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 26
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 27
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Déjà Vu All Over Again
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 29
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 30
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 31
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 32
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 33
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - A Failure to Gauge Risk
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 35
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 36
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 37
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Five Areas to Find Opportunities
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 39
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Getting a Read on Risk
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 41
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 42
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 43
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 44
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 45
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 46
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 47
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Heavenly Returns
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 49
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 50
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 51
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Greenspring Comes to the Rescue
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 53
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 54
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 55
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - How to Spot a Trustworthy REIT
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 57
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Four Picks for the President
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 59
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Find Succor in These Large Dividends
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 61
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - These Stocks Are Fiscally Fit
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 63
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Mutual Fund Analyst Picks
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 65
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 66
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 67
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 50 Most Popular Equity ETFs
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 69
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 70
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 71
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Undervalued Stocks
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 73
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 74
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 75
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Most Popular Variable Annuities
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 77
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - 78
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - New at Morningstar
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - You Gotta Look Sharpe
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Cover3
Morningstar Advisor - February/March 2009 - Cover4
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