XGRO full review

XGRO iShares all-in-one ETF: Full review

What’s an all-in-one ETF

XGRO (iShares Core Growth ETF Portfolio) is all-in-one ETF available on the TSX. All-in-one ETFs are a portfolio professionally managed available for investors in a form of an ETF. It has three main advantages:

  • easy access to a portfolio so it’s great for DIY investors who would like a handoff approach to investing;
  • portfolio is rebalanced automatically to maintain the desired allocation;
  • Good substitute to Robo-advisors such wealthsimple invest (auto-pilot), Questrade porfolios…etc. All-in-one ETF cost less than managed Robo-advisors in terms of fees.

XGRO Investment objective

The Fund seeks to provide long-term capital growth by investing primarily in one or more exchange-traded funds managed by BlackRock Canada or an affiliate that provide exposure to equity and/or fixed income securities.

In essence, when acquiring XGRO, you are acquiring of portfolio of ETFs. 80% of the portfolio is invested in equity ETFs while the remaining 20% is invested in fixed income ETFs. It’s a growth portfolio ideal for investors with long term objective and medium risk tolerance.

XGRO vs VGRO vs ZGRO

There are two main all-in-one ETFs that have same portfolio breakdown (80% equity and 20% bonds): The Vanguard Growth – VGRO and the BMO Growth – ZGRO.

VGRO and XGRO are neck to neck in terms of performance. VGRO has a slight edge in a 3 years period cumulative performance.

Ticker6M3yrs5yrs
XGRO-13.395.216.05
VGRO-13.304.99na
ZGRO-13.224.97n-a
Source: Yahoo Finance – as of October 12th 2022, XGRO vs ZGRO vs VGRO

Fees and Morningstar rating

XGRO has a 0.20% management expense ratio. This is the total charge for the fund. Even if XGRO a group of ETFs at once, client will not pay MER for each ETF, the maximum they are charged is the MER of the all-in-one ETF.

Management Fee 0.18%
Management Expense Ratio (MER) 0.20%

Morningstar rating

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Fees and AUM comparison

XGRO and ZGRO offer the lowest fees at 0.20%. Vanguard’s VGRO is a bit higher at 0.24%. Another factor that could impact your choice is liquidity. Generally speaking, the larger fund the better liquidity it offers to investors. Liquidity determines the difference between bid and ask price when selling or buying. So, it’s an important factor to consider. The largest fund among our three contenders is Vanguards ETF VGRO with over 3 Billion dollars in assets.

TickerAUM*MER
XGRO1,2320.20
VGRO3,2290.24
ZGRO1300.20
Source: Barchart November 24th, *AUM: Asset under management in millions

XGRO Holdings

HGRO has a great coverage, it includes US, Canada and World equities. 36.47% is invested in US stocks. As you can see below, XGRO invests in a basket of i-shares ETFs.

NameWeight
ISHARES CORE S&P TOTAL U.S. STOCK38.17
ISHARES S&P/TSX CAPPED COMPOSITE20.63
ISHARES MSCI EAFE IMI INDEX19.14
ISHS CORE CAD UNIV BND IDX ETF (CA11.51
ISHARES CORE MSCI EMERGING MARKETS3.89
iShares Core CAD ST Cor Bd Index2.90
ISHARES US TREASURY BOND ETF1.84
ISHARES BROAD USD INVESTMENT G1.84
USD CASH0.09
CAD CASH0.08

List of stocks held by XGRO through the basket ETFs it invests in:

Company NameAllocation
Microsoft Corp2.0%
Apple Inc1.9%
Shopify Inc Registered 1.4%
Royal Bank of Canada1.2%
Amazon.com Inc1.2%
The Toronto-Dominion Bank1.1%
Brookfield Asset
Management Inc Class A
0.7%
Enbridge Inc0.7%
Tesla Inc0.7%
Alphabet Inc Class A0.7%
as of November 23rd

XEQT iShares Core Equity ETF Portfolio vs XGRO iShares Core Growth ETF Portfolio

XEQT is more aggressive than XGRO. The portfolio of ETFs under XEQT are 100% in stocks whereas under XGRO they are 80% in stocks.

So, it depends on your risk tolerance. If you have a long term objective and have a higher risk tolerance then XEQT is a great option.

see below the holdings for XEQT:

NameWeight %
ITOT – ISHARES CORE S&P TOTAL U.S. STOCK46.87
XIC – ISHARES S&P/TSX CAPPED COMPOSITE24.77
XEF – ISHARES MSCI EAFE IMI INDEX23.29
IEMG – ISHARES CORE MSCI EMERGING MARKETS4.83
CAD CASH0.14
USD CASH0.10

How can I buy XGRO

Clients have simply to use their banks brokerage websites or independent brokers platform (such as Questrade or Wealthsimple) to acquire the ETF. No need to contact a financial advisor, it’s a product for DIY investors.

XGRO can be held in registered accounts such as RRSP, TFSA or RESP.