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Should You Invest in the iShares U.S. Healthcare Providers ETF (IHF)?

Sector ETF report for IHF

This story originally appeared on Zacks

Designed to provide broad exposure to the Healthcare - Healthcare - Providers segment of the equity market, the iShares U.S. Healthcare Providers ETF (IHF) is a passively managed exchange traded fund launched on 05/01/2006.

- Zacks

While an excellent vehicle for long term investors, passively managed ETFs are a popular choice among institutional and retail investors due to their low costs, transparency, flexibility, and tax efficiency.

Additionally, sector ETFs offer convenient ways to gain low risk and diversified exposure to a broad group of companies in particular sectors. Healthcare - Healthcare - Providers is one of the 16 broad Zacks sectors within the Zacks Industry classification. It is currently ranked 10, placing it in bottom 38%.

Index Details

The fund is sponsored by Blackrock. It has amassed assets over $1.26 billion, making it one of the larger ETFs attempting to match the performance of the Healthcare - Healthcare - Providers segment of the equity market. IHF seeks to match the performance of the Dow Jones U.S. Select HealthCare Providers Index before fees and expenses.

The Dow Jones U.S. Select HealthCare Providers Index is free-float adjusted market capitalization-weighted index. It measures the performance of the health care providers sub-sector of the U.S. equity market. It includes health maintenance organizations, hospitals, clinics, dentists, opticians, nursing homes rehabilitation & retirement centres.


When considering an ETF's total return, expense ratios are an important factor, and cheaper funds can significantly outperform their more expensive counterparts in the long term if all other factors remain equal.

Annual operating expenses for this ETF are 0.42%, making it on par with most peer products in the space.

It has a 12-month trailing dividend yield of 0.56%.

Sector Exposure and Top Holdings

Even though ETFs offer diversified exposure which minimizes single stock risk, it is still important to look into a fund's holdings before investing. Luckily, most ETFs are very transparent products that disclose their holdings on a daily basis.

This ETF has heaviest allocation in the Healthcare sector--about 100% of the portfolio.

Looking at individual holdings, Unitedhealth Group Inc (UNH) accounts for about 22.52% of total assets, followed by Cvs Health Corp (CVS) and Anthem Inc (ANTM).

The top 10 holdings account for about 72.40% of total assets under management.

Performance and Risk

The ETF has added roughly 18.50% so far this year and is up about 35.99% in the last one year (as of 10/29/2021). In that past 52-week period, it has traded between $200.78 and $277.44.

The ETF has a beta of 0.88 and standard deviation of 27.21% for the trailing three-year period, making it a medium risk choice in the space. With about 66 holdings, it effectively diversifies company-specific risk.


IShares U.S. Healthcare Providers ETF carries a Zacks ETF Rank of 3 (Hold), which is based on expected asset class return, expense ratio, and momentum, among other factors. Thus, IHF is a sufficient option for those seeking exposure to the Health Care ETFs area of the market. Investors might also want to consider some other ETF options in the space.

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iShares U.S. Healthcare Providers ETF (IHF): ETF Research Reports


UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (UNH): Free Stock Analysis Report


CVS Health Corporation (CVS): Free Stock Analysis Report


Anthem, Inc. (ANTM): Free Stock Analysis Report


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