Beginners may be looking for some ASX shares to start their portfolios with.
I wouldn’t want to go for high-risk shares where your first experience could be a bad one. After all, the idea is to benefit from compound interest over time.
Another factor to consider is diversification. If you can find a portfolio investment that gives diversification straight away then that’s a useful benefit.
Betashares Global Quality Leaders ETF (ASX: QLTY)
This is one of my favourite exchange traded funds (ETFs) right now. ETFs are great because they allow you to buy a whole bunch of different shares in a single basket. But there are some drawbacks to that strategy – what if there are some bad shares that you don’t want in that basket? Or what if all those shares are listed in one country like Australia or the US?
I think Betashares Global Quality Leaders ETF solves both of those problems. It invests in businesses all over the world and it only owns quality businesses – hence the name.
What counts as quality? BetaShares tells us that the businesses have to rank well on four key factors: return on equity, debt-to-capital, cash flow generation ability and earnings stability. That’s a strong way to rule out a lot of shares in my opinion. And this ETF only costs 0.35% per year.
Its current top 10 holdings are: Intel, Alphabet, AIA, Intuit, Cisco Systems, 3M, Visa, Texas Instruments, Johnson & Johnson and UnitedHealth.
Past performance is no guarantee at all of future performance, but since inception in November 2018, the ETF has returned an average return per annum of 16.6%.
BetaShares Global Sustainability Leaders ETF (ASX: ETHI)
This is another ETF that I really like from BetaShares.
Some investors may not like the idea of owning businesses from certain industries related to gambling, tobacco, armaments, fossil fuels and so on. BetaShares Global Sustainability Leaders ETF excludes them all, and only goes for climate leaders that rank highly on carbon efficiency in their sector.
When you look at the biggest exposures of this ETF, you’ll see that it’s also a high quality list which includes: Apple, Tesla, NVIDIA, Mastercard, PayPal, Home Depot, Visa, Adobe, ASML and Netflix. Just like the other ETF, the 200 holdings in this fund come from all over the world.
Some ethical strategies cost an arm and a leg in management fees, but this has an annual management fee of just 0.59% per annum.
It has also produced strong returns, delivering net returns per annum of 20.6% per annum since January 2017. Again, past performance is no guarantee of future performance, particularly as strong as that.
Future Generation Global Investment Co Ltd (ASX: FGG)
Future Generation Global is a very interesting listed investment company (LIC). It is invested in the funds of fund managers that invest in global shares. So it offers a lot of diversification considering you’re getting exposure to more than 10 funds within the portfolio.
But those fund managers don’t charge fees – they work for free so that Future Generation Global can donate 1% of its net tangible assets (NTA) per year to charities focused on mental health for young people. It’s a very admirable cause.
Whilst the investment performance of the Future Generation Global portfolio hasn’t been as strong as the above ETFs, it has outperformed the global share market index. For example, over the last three years its average gross return per annum of 13% was 3.2% per annum better than the global index. It has achieved that with less volatility than the global index as well.
The share price is valued at a 14% discount to the pre-tax net tangible assets per share. That’s a nice discount.