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13 Best UK ETFs

13 Best UK ETFs

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Introduction

One of the most common investment strategies is purchasing shares in the best UK ETFs (exchange-traded funds).

This is especially true for younger investors who enjoy the diversity that ETFs provide without the rigidity of a mutual fund.

The trading liquidity of equities, the flexibility to control risk by trading futures like an individual stock, and enhanced exposure to a wide range of assets are three major advantages of the top UK ETFs.

Although there are many UK ETFs to choose from, utilizing an ETF screener to choose funds based on chosen parameters helps simplify investment decisions.

The following 13 best UK ETFs may be among the best options for 2023 given the inflationary climate. The fact that only ETFs with LSE listings are included on this list helps investors avoid paying the higher commission fees connected with ETFs registered on other exchanges.

How To Invest In UK ETFs?

The simplest approach to invest in UK ETFs is through an online broker, where you can open an account without any difficulty and obtain access to ETFs listed on stock exchanges all around the UK.

AJ Bell Youinvest, Charles Schwab, etoro, Interactive Brokers, Hargreaves Lansdown, and others are reputable ETF brokers.

Before selecting a broker, you should consider their selection of ETFs and the transaction costs they levy.

What Are The Benefits Of Investing In UK ETFs?

ETFs provide a low-cost, tax-efficient option to invest in a diverse variety of assets, which is one of its key benefits.

They also give investors the chance to trade them readily on a stock market, allowing them to purchase and sell them like they would any other stock during the day.

Additionally, ETFs often have lower charges than conventional mutual funds, which makes them a more appealing choice for investors who want to increase their money over the long term at a lower cost.

Finally, because there are no dividend taxes in the UK, you are able to keep all dividend payments from your ETFs.

13 Best UK ETFs

1. iShares Core FTSE 100 UCITS ETF

This FTSE 100 index tracker gives investors exposure to the 100 biggest UK-listed firms by market size, making it arguably the most well-liked UK ETF. The fund, which is one of the best UK ETFs, makes an effort to replicate exactly how FTSE Russell allocates its FTSE 100 components’ performance.

The ETF delivers internationally diversified growth through sizable UK-based market leaders including AstraZeneca, Shell, and HSBC, and it has incredibly low costs.

Additionally, the index has outperformed its overseas counterparts in 2022 because to the defensive characteristics of its heavy weighting in a bank, energy, and mining firms.

It’s true that iShares presents the ETF as something that should be used “at the heart of a portfolio to pursue long-term gain.

Its primary drawback is that, even when monetary policy inevitably loosens, the FTSE 100’s “dinosaur” stocks are unlikely to see spectacular growth.

FTSE Russell data reveals that 82% of the revenue generated by FTSE 100 businesses is generated outside of the UK, allowing index investors to profit from the present weakening of the pound. Nevertheless, the index is vulnerable to localized disruptions within the UK.

13 Best UK ETFs
Image from Flickr.

2. iShares Index-Linked Gilts ETF

This index-linked gilt ETF is a fantastic choice for those wishing to purchase UK ETFs that are reduced risk. This ETF is one of the best UK ETFs.

Bonds issued by the UK government known as “Gilts” have a set rate of interest. Instead of paying a fixed interest rate, index-linked gilts pay a predetermined margin above inflation.

This can make them appealing during periods of high inflation (as today), as investors earn higher returns as inflation rises.

Investors may gain exposure to this low-risk investment with the iShares Index-Linked Gilt ETF, which has annual expenses of only 0.10%.

3. iShares UK Dividend UCITS ETF

Many investors like investing in an ETF that concentrates on dividend yields, the key competitive advantage of the biggest UK corporations, as opposed to just in FTSE 100 companies.

The top 50 UK firms within the FTSE 350 with the greatest dividend yield are represented by the iShares UK Dividend UCITS ETF, which does this by providing diversified exposure to them. This fund is one of the best UK ETFs.

Top income-focused holdings, excluding solely investment trusts, include Persimmon, Rio Tinto, Legal & General, Anglo America, and Imperial Brands.

This depicts four industries—mining, housing, insurance, and tobacco—that have a long history of dividend payments but that occasionally fluctuate according to economic cycles.

Many investors combine this ETF with a NASDAQ 100 or S&P 500 index tracker ETF, but this is because it is even less growth-exposed than an FTSE 100 tracker. Despite having often a little higher costs, these do give access to a greater degree of variety.

4. iShare UK Property ETF

Due to the attractive and accessible buy-to-let market in the UK, when people consider investing, they often think about real estate.

Direct real estate investment, however, demands more money upfront as well as time and energy to maintain the actual buildings.

Additionally, particularly if you’re new to the game, it’s possible that you as an independent property investor won’t be allowed to own property in all sectors. You might thus wish to think about investing in an ETF or even UK REITs.

The FTSE EPRA NAREIT UK Index, which tries to measure movements in real estate stocks, is tracked by the iShare UK Property ETF, which is one of the best UK ETFs. This fund was introduced in 2007.

5. Vanguard FTSE 250 ETF

The most widely used index for the UK stock market is the FTSE 100, however, it doesn’t always represent the country’s economy. This is due to the fact that the majority of the largest UK-listed firms are profitable outside of the country.

A more accurate indicator of businesses that do the majority of their business locally is the FTSE 250. It also includes other businesses including ITV, Easyjet, Marks & Spencer, Greggs, and Pets at Home in addition to the FTSE 100.

Investors could consider the Vanguard FTSE 250 ETF (VMID), which is one of the best UK ETFs. This fund has a modest continuing management fee of 0.10%.

6. Vanguard FTSE All-World UCITS ETF

This £6.7 billion exchange-traded fund is one of the most well-known internationally since it tries to follow the performance of the FTSE All-World index, which is composed of big and mid-sized businesses in both established and emerging nations. The fund is one of the best UK ETFs.

In a way, it provides access to approximately 4,000 firms from across 50 nations for a reasonable annual price, offering the most diverse portfolio of equities imaginable in one convenient basket.

Geographical bias is present, with 60% of the ETF’s firms having their headquarters in the US, 6% in Japan, 4% in the UK, and 3% in China.

Additionally, the largest industry on the FTSE All-World Index is technology, which had a disappointing 2022 because to the relative dominance of the US tech titans.

The company’s largest holdings, which have a median market valuation of approximately $100 billion, are Apple and Amazon.

The S&P 500 alone often outperforms the index, though. However, the index functions well as an FTSE 100 tracker’s companion.

It’s also important to note the advantages of diversification; investors need to guard against unforeseen or even catastrophic catastrophes, the sporadic bubble in the US stock market, and they should take into account the substantially larger growth potential of developing countries.

13 Best UK ETFs
Image from ccnull.

7. SPDR S&P UK Dividend Aristocrats UCITS ETF

Stocks with a dividend rise streak of at least 25 years are known as dividend aristocrats.

Investors frequently focus on these businesses because they have solid fundamentals, competent management, and a long-term competitive edge. Also, dividend aristocrats are often big blue-chip firms, which are less prone to volatility than small-cap stocks.

The performance of UK-based high-yield dividend aristocrat stocks is tracked by the S&P UK High Yield Dividend Aristocrats Index. With 39 current shareholders, it has a 3.9% dividend yield.

8. SPDR FTSE UK All Share UCITS ETF

The SPDR FTSE UK All Share ETF (SPYF), which is one of the best UK ETFs and was introduced in 2012, follows the performance of the FTSE All-Share index. The index reflects all listed businesses on the main market of the London Stock Exchange and provides coverage of 98% of the UK market.

Under the symbol SPYF, it is traded on the Deutsche Borse in EUR. It is also offered on the London Stock Exchange in GBP and the SIX Swiss Exchange in CHF.

A 6.94% annualized return over a ten-year period was the result.

You should be aware that SPYF is an accumulating ETF, so don’t anticipate a dividend payment. In order to increase capital growth over time, dividends will instead be reinvested in the fund.

9. Invesco Physical Gold ETC

The UK’s CPI inflation rate is at 10.7% and is expected to grow in April as energy prices rise. The main concern for 2022 has been inflation, as central banks have raised interest rates to levels not seen since the financial crisis of 2008.

Gold continues to be the conventional real asset inflation hedge in a period of increasing inflation, protecting assets in times of extreme market stress and retaining buying power.

Invesco Physical Gold ETC, which is backed 1:1 by gold bullion stored by JP Morgan Chase in London bank vaults, aims to mimic the performance of the London Gold Market Fixing Ltd PM Fix Price/USD.

Investments in gold’s performance through 2023 may pay off, particularly when the US Federal Reserve and other central banks begin to sluggish rate increases as the global economy faces recession.

For reference, consider that during the 2008 financial crisis, gold increased by 24% while the S&P 500 dropped by 37%. It may also be a good time to buy now considering the gold price adjustment in H2 2022.

10. WisdomTree Brent Crude Oil ETF

The Bloomberg Brent Crude Subindex is closely tracked by the WisdomTree Brent Crude Oil ETF, which is secured by swaps held with the Bank of New York Mellon. This fund is one of the best UK ETFs.

By purchasing shares of this well-liked ETF, investors may gain exposure to Brent Crude, which is based on oil extracted from the North Sea and is widely regarded as the most popular oil benchmark.

Even though oil prices are at an all-time high right now, Brent only saw its first negative reading two years ago when the pandemic-caused slump sank worldwide demand.

The demand for oil from the surviving producers has increased as a result of the closure of many smaller oil producers and the subsequent worldwide economic recovery in 2022.

Despite slowing down, Brent is now trading for approximately $100 per barrel, $30 above its 2021 average. This is due to the OPEC+ cartel’s unwillingness to boost output as well as the fact that Russian oil is virtually under embargo because of the Ukraine war.

While this ETF gives investors the chance to make money, particularly if the price of oil jumps once again, the danger of demand destruction also remains significant, especially given the risk factors associated with a worldwide recession.

11. MSCI United Kingdom UCITS ETF 

UBS Asset Management is in charge of overseeing the MSCI United Kingdom UCITS ETF, which is one of the best UK ETFs. It’s an accumulating ETF that debuted in 2013.

It follows the performance of the big and mid-size firms in the UK market as measured by the MSCI UK Index. It has 81 constituents as of June 2022, including businesses from 11 different industries.

As of June 2022, the MSCI UK Index has a 10-year annualized return of 3.8% and a cumulative annualized return of 5.86% from May 1994.

13 Best UK ETFs
Image from Flickr.

12. HSBC UK Sustainable Equity UCITS ETF

With a goal of reducing carbon emissions and exposure to fossil fuel reserves as well as raising the FTSE Russell ESG rating above that of the Parent Index, HSBC’s Sustainable Equity UCITS ETF tries to replicate the performance of the FTSE UK ESG Low Carbon Select Index as closely as feasible.

The ETF, which is one of the best UK ETFs, achieves this objective by excluding firms based on sustainability exclusionary criteria and by using the exclusionary criteria of the UN Global Compact. When there are “exceptional market conditions,” the fund may invest up to 35% of its assets in securities from only one issuer.

Although there are other places to invest that provide higher yields, many UK investors are increasingly placing more emphasis on ESG and sustainability than on profitability. One of the easiest ways to achieve this is using this ETF.

The UK, Europe, and USA now have a political incentive to further develop green energy, including wind, solar, and nuclear as a method of attaining better energy security after the COP26 climate summit, especially in the aftermath of rising oil and gas prices. This ETF may increase as a result, but its main draw is as an entry point into ESG investing.

13. Lyxor Core UK Equity All Cap UCITS ETF

Lyxor Asset Management Group is in charge of overseeing the Lyxor Core UK Equity All Cap UCITS ETF, which is one of the best UK ETFs. It is a distributing ETF with bi-annual payments that was very recently introduced in 2018.

It follows the Morningstar UK Index, which gauges the performance of the top 97% of stocks in the UK stock market based on market capitalization. It had 319 constituents as of June 2022 and had provided a total return of 17.77% during the previous 10 years.

Final Thoughts

Even while the best UK ETFs might be a valuable addition to your portfolio, it’s still important to consider the drawbacks when evaluating ETF investing techniques.

Keep in mind that factors like currency changes might affect future performance and your total returns if you invest in the best UK ETFs that track overseas stock markets.

Additionally, by design, it is impossible for you to outperform the market, as you would with individual stocks if you invest in passive exchange-traded funds on stock exchanges that solely monitor the performance of stock markets.

Ultimately, you will have to choose the best financial instrument for you to employ depending on your unique circumstances and financial objectives, whether that be a UCITS ETF or something altogether else.

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Adam is an internationally recognised author on financial matters, with over 739.2 million answer views on Quora.com, a widely sold book on Amazon, and a contributor on Forbes.

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