This ETF offers targeted exposure to the aerospace & defense sector, a corner of the domestic economy that is capable of generating significant returns but that may also be subject to political risk in certain environments. Given the narrow focus of XAR--as well as the fact that the fund focuses primarily on large cap stocks--there might be little use for this fund in long-term, buy-and-hold portfolios (since most of the stocks held in XAR are already included in broad-based equity funds). This ETF can, however, be a useful tool for tactical traders looking to overweight this corner of the market.
For investors seeking broad-based exposure to the industrials sector, there are a number of options available in the Industrials ETFdb Category. And there are other targeted aerospace and defense ETFs as well, including the more established ITA and PPA. This ETF from State Street stands out from the competition in a couple of ways. First, the underlying index is equal-weighted, giving this fund a balanced portfolio that avoids significant company specific risk (and may address concerns about the efficiency of cap-weighted benchmarks). Second, XAR is cheaper than the competition, an obvious plus for those seeking to minimize expenses.
Given the targeted focus of this fund, XAR probably isn't for everyone. But for investors looking to access the aerospace & defense sector, this fund is the best option out there.