I’m interested in how the country exposure of the FTSE All-World High Dividend Yield Index and the FTSE All-World Index have changed over time (if it has much at all).

The index factsheets page here provides “Archives” links, but they only give access to the last year of data. The All-World was started in 1986 and the All-World High Dividend Yield was started in 2008; the sort of thing I’d really like to get hold of is a pair of factsheets from, say, 2008 to see if the country breakdown of either index was much different from what it is today.

An alternative source of info might be from funds/ETFs which track those indices (and indeed this is what motivates my interest). The two obvious (only?) ones are VHYL and VWRL but Vanguard don’t seem to provide any way of viewing historical data and in any case VHYL only appeared in 2013 and VWRL in 2012 so old snapshots of fund factsheets wouldn’t reach back as far as index data would.

I didn’t manage to coax anything useful out of the wayback machine for either site.

An alternative version of this question would be: the All-World High Dividend Yield Index's top 3 are (from end-Feb.2017 factsheets) ~40%/10%/6% USA/UK/Japan and the All-World Index's are 53%/8%/6% USA/Japan/UK but what did the numbers look like in, say, 2008 and 2013?


There is a fiddly way you can do it. For example, I obtained the April 2014 factsheet from the FTSE Analytics site using the following method.

  1. As you have already done, click on the "archive" link for the AWHD index to open the dialog box offering you a choice from the twelve previous months.
  2. Right click on one of the archive links and then choose "Copy link address" from the menu. (This is as per Google Chrome operations. Other browsers may vary.)
  3. Open a new (blank) tab in your browser and paste the copied link address into the address (URL) text box.
  4. BEFORE "hitting return", edit the address to use the month you are interested in. In particular, towards the end of the linked address you will see a date encoding - e.g. "....IssueDate=20160429....". Edit this date to be the last working day of the month you are interested in. In my example, I changed it to "....IssueDate=20140430...."
  5. Now "hit return" and you should download the factsheet for the requested month in PDF format - assuming you have correctly identified the last working day of the month taking account of weekends and holidays.

I've only tried this on the April2014 PDF, so don't know how far back the available archive goes.


I have just tried going back further and it seems that the archive ends in 2013. For example, I can download the April 2013 factsheet, but not the April 2012 factsheet.

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  • Nice. So from that I can see the All-World High Yield end-April 2013 top 3 were 33%/13%/6% USA/UK/Australia, and the All-World was 46%/9%/8% USA/Japan/UK which is an interesting data point and proof the High Yield allocation does vary in interesting (surprising?!) ways. Now if only it was possible to go back a bit further... – timday Mar 27 '17 at 14:12

Using Nick R's URL hack, I was able to compile the following table of top-5 country percentages for the all-world and all-world high dividend yield (WRL and HDY lines).

20130430: HDY  USA: 33.06  UK:    13.25  Australia:   6.37  Switzerland: 5.67  France:      5.1 
          WRL  USA: 46.29  Japan:  8.87  UK:          7.97  Australia:   3.55  Canada:      3.49 

20131031: HDY  USA: 31.50  UK:    13.99  Australia:   6.04  Switzerland: 5.78  France:      5.61
          WRL  USA: 47.02  Japan:  8.45  UK:          8.10  France:      3.56  Canada:      3.44  

20140430: HDY  USA: 32.29  UK:    13.34  Switzerland: 6.53  Australia:   5.74  France:      5.51
          WRL  USA: 48.21  UK:     8.07  Japan:       7.58  France:      3.68  Germany:     3.44

20141031: HDY  USA: 32.69  UK:    13.65  Switzerland: 6.33  Australia:   5.55  France:      4.66
          WRL  USA: 50.45  Japan:  7.89  UK:          7.33  Canada:      3.32  France:      3.12

20150430: HDY  USA: 36.46  UK:    12.21  Switzerland: 6.09  Australia:   4.74  France:      4.38
          WRL  USA: 49.79  Japan:  8.47  UK:          7.26  France:      3.28  Switzerland: 3.12

20151030: HDY  USA: 38.15  UK:    11.89  Switzerland: 6.10  France:      4.57  Australia:   4.27 
          WRL  USA: 52.00  Japan:  8.56  UK:          7.14  France:      3.28  Switzerland: 3.19

20160429: HDY  USA: 39.90  UK:    10.86  Switzerland: 5.59  Japan:       5.58  Australia:   4.24
          WRL  USA: 51.95  Japan:  8.44  UK:          6.85  France:      3.19  Germany:     3.05

20161031: HDY  USA: 40.14  UK:     9.66  Japan:       6.48  Switzerland: 5.66  France:      3.99
          WRL  USA: 52.07  Japan:  8.80  UK:          6.14  France:      3.12  Germany:     3.02

20170228: HDY  USA: 40.38  UK:     9.54  Japan:       6.41  Switzerland: 5.62  Canada:      4.17
          WRL  USA: 53.22  Japan:  8.41  UK:          6.06  France:      3.03  Germany:     3.01

This does cover the time since VHYL was launched mid 2013 and (assuming VHYL and VWRL do track their indices' constituents well enough) it's quite interesting to see how VHYL has evolved compared with the more stable VWRL. The increasing proportion of VHYL in the USA is surprising (to me) given the general fuss over USA valuations currently.

Other artefacts which might be of interest to anyone stumbling on this:

  • A chart of relative performance of VHYL and VWRL since VHYL's launch:

FT chart


  • Some Morningstar research can be found in the open here and expresses some not unreasonable scepticism about VHYL's lack of (dividend) sustainability or quality screening.

  • Other "world" passives which have reduced (compared to VWRL) US exposure which have got on my radar are: Vanguard Lifestrategy 100 (which currently has top 5 41%/23%/7%/3%/3% USA/UK/Japan/Switzerland/Germany; note some home bias is built into the strategy) and iShares' MSCI World Value Factor ETF (which currently has 38%/26%/8%/7%/5% USA/Japan/UK/France/Germany). I've not looked into the evolution of either of these.

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