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Forbes’ Newsletters “Stock of the Week” – iShares MSCI France Index Fund (EWQ)

The iShares MSCI France Index Fund (EWQ) is an ETF that is based on the MSCI France Index. The index currently is comprised of 76 securities with top sectors being financials, consumer discretionary, energy, industrials, and materials.

The France ETF (EWQ) is the ETF “pick of the week” from Carl Delfield, editor of the Chartwell ETF Global Advisor newsletter. Mr. Delfield highlighted several reasons for his choice of the France ETF. The main reason he highlighted is the current government of French President Nicholas Sarkozy. Sarkozy’s government has begun to implement major changes to the French economy. Some of the changes include: slashing of red tape, raising of the retirement age, privatization of some public sectors, and a possible end to the 35-hour work week.

Mr. Delfield believes that these recent policy changes signal that France is moving in the right economic direction. He also believes that now with French stocks at their lowest level in nearly two years, it’s a decent time for long-term investors to establish a position.

Mr. Delfield stated that the French stock market is dominated by leading multinationals which are able to search for growth globally. In fact, ten of Europe’s largest 40 multinationals are based in France. Some of these multinationals include: France Telecom, Arcelor Mittal, Total, BNP Paribas, GDF Suez, and Sanofi-Aventis. The companies in the France ETF (EWQ), he noted, are at reasonable valuations, trading at 5.4 times cash flow, 1.54 times book value, and with over a 4.5% yield.

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