Looking at Xtrackers MSCI USA UCITS ETF fund. Under "Index Description" it says:

"The MSCI Total Return Net USA Index which is designed to reflect the performance of the shares of certain companies in the USA. The companies making up the Index are large and medium sized companies based on the combined value of a company’s readily available shares as compared to other companies. The Index aims to represent 85% of the readily available shares in each industry sector in the USA market. A company’s weighting on the Index depends on its relative size. The Index is calculated on a total return net basis which means that all dividends and distributions by the companies are reinvested in the shares after tax. The Index is reviewed and rebalanced at least quarterly."

When I look at MSCI web site, I can't find "MSCI Total Return Net USA Index", only MSCI USA Index.

Where to find the index data?

  • Mind sharing the ticker symbol for the fund? If your source is describing the underlying index rather than giving its official name, probably we can find a source showing the official name. – Ben Voigt Jan 25 '19 at 2:18

Reading the factsheets [1,2] that are available for MSCI USA, it appears that MSCI calculate the performance of the index both as net total returns and gross total returns. The make-up of the index, in this case approximately 85% of US market capitalization, is the same in both cases.

In other words, the performance of a single index can be calculated more than one way.

The Deutsche product tracks the MSCI USA index and offers total returns net.

[1] https://www.msci.com/resources/factsheets/index_fact_sheet/msci-usa-index-net.pdf

[2] https://www.msci.com/resources/factsheets/index_fact_sheet/msci-usa-index-gross.pdf

  • So, the "MSCI Total Return Net USA" index does not exist under that name. It is in fact "MSCI USA" index. Is that right? – Danijel Jan 24 '19 at 13:49
  • @Danijel Yes, sort of. I've edited my answer to make things clearer. – Anthony Hepple Jan 25 '19 at 16:27
  • Two ways of calculaing index performance?? That's a great find, thanks Anthony. – Danijel Jan 28 '19 at 9:02

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