How to invest in the UK using ETFs

How do I invest in UK stocks?

The easiest way to invest in the whole UK stock market is to invest in a broad market index. This can be done at low cost by using ETFs.

On the UK stock market you find 3 indices, which are tracked by ETFs. Besides these indices 8 alternative indices on small and mid caps as well as dividend strategies can be considered.

Alternatively, you may invest in indices on Europe. The Europe indices weight the UK with 28% to 42%.

0.07% p.a. - 0.40% p.a.
annual total expense ratio (TER) of UK ETFs
on the UK stock market, which are tracked by ETFs
on the UK stock market
The best indices for UK ETFs

Performance of UK stocks (FTSE 100)

1 month: -2.36%
1 year: 5.94%
3 years: 36.58%
5 years: 34.73%

Indices in comparison

The best indices for ETFs on UK

For an investment in the UK stock market, 3 indices tracked by 18 ETFs are available. On the FTSE 100 index there are 10 ETFs. On the FTSE All-Share index there are 4 ETFs. On the MSCI UK index there are 4 ETFs. The total expense ratio (TER) of ETFs on these indices is between 0.07% p.a. and 0.40% p.a..

Index Investment focus Number of ETFs Number of constituents Short description

FTSE 100

United Kingdom 10 ETFs 101
(31/08/18)
The FTSE 100 (price) index tracks the 100 largest UK stocks.
Index factsheet

FTSE All-Share

United Kingdom 4 ETFs 637
(31/08/18)
The FTSE All-Share (total return) index tracks all UK-based companies admitted to the main market of the London Stock Exchange.
Index factsheet

MSCI UK

United Kingdom 4 ETFs 101
(31/08/18)
The MSCI UK index tracks large and mid cap equity market performance of United Kingdom.
Index factsheet
ETF
ISIN
  Fund size
in m GBP
TER
in %
Use of profits Fund domicile Replication method
iShares Core FTSE 100 UCITS ETF (Dist)IE0005042456 5,686 0.07% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
Vanguard FTSE 100 UCITS ETFIE00B810Q511 2,630 0.09% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
UBS ETF (LU) MSCI UK UCITS ETF (GBP) A-accLU0950670850 610 0.20% p.a. Accumulating Luxembourg Full replication
SPDR FTSE UK All Share UCITS ETFIE00B7452L46 492 0.20% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Optimized sampling
iShares FTSE 100 UCITS ETF (Acc)IE00B53HP851 448 0.07% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Full replication
Lyxor FTSE 100 UCITS ETF C-GBPLU1650492173 335 0.15% p.a. Accumulating Luxembourg Unfunded swap
HSBC FTSE 100 UCITS ETF GBPIE00B42TW061 155 0.07% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
iShares MSCI UK UCITS ETF (Acc)IE00B539F030 135 0.33% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Full replication
Xtrackers FTSE 100 UCITS ETF 1CLU0838780707 125 0.09% p.a. Accumulating Luxembourg Full replication
Xtrackers FTSE 100 UCITS ETF Income 1DLU0292097234 112 0.09% p.a. Distributing Luxembourg Full replication
Amundi ETF MSCI UK UCITS ETF - EUR (C)FR0010655761 87 0.25% p.a. Accumulating France Unfunded swap
UBS ETF (LU) FTSE 100 UCITS ETF (GBP) A-disLU0136242590 71 0.20% p.a. Distributing Luxembourg Full replication
Xtrackers FTSE All-Share UCITS ETF 1DLU0292097747 67 0.20% p.a. Distributing Luxembourg Optimized sampling
Source FTSE 100 UCITS ETF AIE00B60SWT88 11 0.20% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Unfunded swap
Lyxor FTSE All Share UCITS ETF GBPFR0010438150 8 0.40% p.a. Accumulating France Unfunded swap
UBS ETF (LU) MSCI UK UCITS ETF (GBP) A-disLU0937836467 8 0.20% p.a. Distributing Luxembourg Full replication
SPDR FTSE UK All Share UCITS ETF (Dist)IE00BD5FCF91 7 0.20% p.a. Distributing Ireland Optimized sampling
Amundi ETF FTSE 100 UCITS ETF GBPLU1437025296 5 0.25% p.a. Accumulating Luxembourg Unfunded swap
 
Index   1 month
in %
3 months
in %
6 months
in %
1 year
in %
3 years
in %
MSCI UK -3.31% -2.08% 5.00% 3.31% 32.30%
FTSE 100 -3.27% -2.08% 5.29% 4.07% 33.83%
FTSE All-Share -2.78% -1.74% 5.45% 4.40% 33.64%
Index   2018
in %
2017
in %
2016
in %
2015
in %
2014
in %
FTSE 100 -0.94% 11.91% 19.19% -1.59% 0.41%
MSCI UK -0.65% 11.56% 18.88% -2.39% 0.39%
FTSE All-Share -0.06% 12.90% 16.51% 0.76% 1.08%

Source: justETF.com; As of 31/08/18; Calculations in GBP based on the largest ETF of the respective index.

 

The cheapest UK ETFs
by total expense ratio (TER)

Show all
Alternative investment opportunities

UK indices on small and mid caps or dividend strategies

Alternatively, you may invest in indices on small and mid caps or dividend strategies. In total, you can invest in 8 alternative UK indices, which are tracked by 14 ETFs. The total expense ratio (TER) of ETFs on alternative UK indices is between 0.10% p.a. and 0.58% p.a..

 
Index Investment focus Number of ETFs Number of constituents Short description
FTSE 100 Equally Weighted United Kingdom
Equal Weighted
1 ETF 101
(29/12/17)
The FTSE 100 Semi Annually Equally Weighted Net Tax Index tracks the 100 largest UK stocks. All constituents in the index are equally weighted at rebalancing (semi-annually).
Index factsheet
FTSE 100 Minimum Variance United Kingdom
Low Volatility/Risk Weighted
2 ETFs 70
(29/12/17)
The FTSE 100 Minimum Variance index tracks the most liquid UK stocks in the FTSE 100 optimised for the lowest absolute risk.
Index factsheet
FTSE 250 United Kingdom
Mid Cap
6 ETFs 250
The FTSE 250 (total return) index tracks around 250 of the largest mid-cap companies based in the United Kingdom that are not included in the FTSE 100.
Index factsheet
FTSE RAFI UK 100 United Kingdom
Fundamental/Quality
1 ETF 100
(29/12/17)
The FTSE RAFI UK 100 (total return) index tracks UK stocks. The FTSE RAFI Index Series selects and weights index constituents using four fundamental factors, rather than market capitalisation. The factors are dividends, cash flows, sales and book value.
Index factsheet
FTSE UK Dividend+ United Kingdom
Dividend
1 ETF 50
(31/08/18)
The FTSE UK Dividend+ index tracks the 50 highest yielding UK stocks.
Index factsheet
MSCI UK IMI Extended SRI 5% Capped United Kingdom
Social/Environmental
1 ETF 168
(29/12/17)
The MSCI UK IMI Extended SRI 5% Issuer Capped index tracks socially or environmentally responsible UK companies.
Index factsheet
MSCI UK Small Cap United Kingdom
Small Cap
1 ETF 269
(31/08/18)
The MSCI UK Small Cap index tracks UK small cap stocks.
Index factsheet
S&P UK High Yield Dividend Aristocrats United Kingdom
Dividend
1 ETF 40
(31/08/18)
The S&P UK High Yield Dividend Aristocrats index tracks appr. 30 highest dividend-yielding UK companies.
Index factsheet
ETF
ISIN
  Fund size
in m GBP
TER
in %
Use of profits Fund domicile Replication method
iShares FTSE 250 UCITS ETFIE00B00FV128 824 0.40% p.a. Distributing Ireland Optimized sampling
Vanguard FTSE 250 UCITS ETFIE00BKX55Q28 752 0.10% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
iShares UK Dividend UCITS ETFIE00B0M63060 665 0.40% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
iShares MSCI UK Small Cap UCITS ETF (Acc)IE00B3VWLG82 143 0.58% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Optimized sampling
UBS ETF (IE) MSCI UK IMI Socially Responsible UCITS ETF (GBP) A-disIE00BMP3HN93 101 0.28% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
SPDR S&P UK Dividend Aristocrats UCITS ETFIE00B6S2Z822 85 0.30% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
Xtrackers FTSE 250 UCITS ETF 1DLU0292097317 48 0.15% p.a. Distributing Luxembourg Full replication
HSBC FTSE 250 UCITS ETF GBPIE00B64PTF05 41 0.35% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
Xtrackers FTSE 100 Equal Weight UCITS ETF 1DIE00BZ0CYG46 24 0.25% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
Source FTSE 250 UCITS ETF AIE00B60SWV01 14 0.25% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Unfunded swap
PowerShares FTSE RAFI UK 100 UCITS ETFIE00B23LNN70 11 0.39% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
Lyxor FTSE 250 UCITS ETF GBPFR0010438135 10 0.35% p.a. Accumulating France Unfunded swap
Ossiam FTSE 100 Minimum Variance UCITS ETF 1C (GBP)LU0705291739 4 0.45% p.a. Accumulating Luxembourg Full replication
Ossiam FTSE 100 Minimum Variance UCITS ETF 1D (GBP)LU1093308333 0 0.45% p.a. Distributing Luxembourg Full replication
 
Index   1 month
in %
3 months
in %
6 months
in %
1 year
in %
3 years
in %
S&P UK High Yield Dividend Aristocrats -2.78% -2.06% 4.58% -3.34% 10.27%
FTSE UK Dividend+ -2.12% -1.61% 5.92% 1.73% 11.72%
FTSE 100 Minimum Variance -2.71% -1.18% 7.09% 2.11% 21.23%
MSCI UK IMI Extended SRI 5% Capped -2.39% -1.76% 5.11% 2.49% 29.26%
FTSE RAFI UK 100 -2.21% -3.25% 4.14% 5.23% 38.25%
FTSE 100 Equally Weighted -2.03% -1.95% 5.79% 5.36% 30.80%
FTSE 250 -0.65% -0.22% 6.62% 6.78% 29.53%
MSCI UK Small Cap -0.61% -0.45% 7.44% 9.33% 35.06%
Index   2018
in %
2017
in %
2016
in %
2015
in %
2014
in %
S&P UK High Yield Dividend Aristocrats -2.74% 3.38% 8.27% 2.15% -2.07%
FTSE RAFI UK 100 -0.96% 12.57% 28.06% -8.42% -1.53%
FTSE UK Dividend+ -0.83% 6.74% 8.52% 0.73% 6.99%
MSCI UK IMI Extended SRI 5% Capped 0.30% 12.66% 12.33% 4.83% -
FTSE 100 Minimum Variance 0.61% 9.63% 7.35% 5.20% 6.24%
FTSE 250 1.29% 17.40% 6.19% 10.66% 3.19%
FTSE 100 Equally Weighted 2.35% 12.89% 12.76% - -
MSCI UK Small Cap 2.66% 20.33% 6.28% 14.16% -0.38%

Source: justETF.com; As of 31/08/18; Calculations in GBP based on the largest ETF of the respective index.

 

Europe indices with a large UK share

Besides UK ETFs you may invest in ETFs on the European stock market. In total, you can invest in 4 indices on Europe, which are tracked by 15 ETFs. The UK is weighted with around 28% to 42% in the Europe indices. The total expense ratio (TER) of ETFs on Europe indices is between 0.07% p.a. and 0.40% p.a..

 
Index Investment focus Number of ETFs Number of constituents Short description
FTSEurofirst 100 Europe
UK: 40.59%
(29/12/2017)
1 ETF 100
The FTSEurofirst 100 index tracks the 60 largest European companies measured by market capitalisation in the FTSE Developed Europe Index and 40 additional companies selected for their size and sector representation.
Index factsheet
MSCI Europe Europe
UK: 28.02%
(29/12/2017)
10 ETFs 446
(31/08/18)
The MSCI Europe (total return) index tracks the leading stocks from 15 European industrial countries.
Index factsheet
STOXX® Europe 50 Europe
UK: 32.90%
(29/12/2017)
1 ETF 50
The STOXX® Europe 50 (total return) index tracks 50 European large cap stocks.
Index factsheet
STOXX® Europe 600 Europe
UK: 27.30%
(29/12/2017)
3 ETFs 600
The STOXX® Europe 600 index tracks European equities, with the 600 stocks broken down as follows: 200 large cap, 200 middle cap and 200 small cap equities.
Index factsheet
ETF
ISIN
  Fund size
in m GBP
TER
in %
Use of profits Fund domicile Replication method
iShares MSCI Europe UCITS ETF (Dist)IE00B1YZSC51 4,009 0.12% p.a. Distributing Ireland Optimized sampling
Xtrackers MSCI Europe Index UCITS ETF 1CLU0274209237 2,391 0.25% p.a. Accumulating Luxembourg Full replication
Amundi MSCI Europe UCITS ETF - EUR (C)LU1681042609 1,674 0.15% p.a. Accumulating Luxembourg Unfunded swap
Lyxor MSCI Europe UCITS ETF D-EURFR0010261198 1,603 0.25% p.a. Distributing France Unfunded swap
Xtrackers STOXX Europe 600 UCITS ETF 1CLU0328475792 1,532 0.20% p.a. Accumulating Luxembourg Optimized sampling
Lyxor Core Stoxx Europe 600 (DR) UCITS ETFLU0908500753 1,268 0.07% p.a. Accumulating Luxembourg Full replication
iShares MSCI Europe UCITS ETF (Acc)IE00B4K48X80 612 0.12% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Optimized sampling
iShares STOXX Europe 50 UCITS ETFIE0008470928 580 0.35% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
SPDR MSCI Europe UCITS ETFIE00BKWQ0Q14 496 0.25% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Full replication
Source MSCI Europe UCITS ETF AIE00B60SWY32 414 0.19% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Unfunded swap
Source STOXX Europe 600 UCITS ETF AIE00B60SWW18 241 0.19% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Unfunded swap
UBS ETF (LU) MSCI Europe UCITS ETF (EUR) A-disLU0446734104 236 0.20% p.a. Distributing Luxembourg Full replication
HSBC MSCI Europe UCITS ETF EURIE00B5BD5K76 132 0.20% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
iShares FTSEurofirst 100 UCITS ETFIE0030974079 23 0.40% p.a. Distributing Ireland Full replication
Xtrackers ESG MSCI Europe UCITS ETF 1CIE00BFMNHK08 6 0.20% p.a. Accumulating Ireland Full replication
 
Index   1 month
in %
3 months
in %
6 months
in %
1 year
in %
3 years
in %
STOXX® Europe 50 -2.97% 2.64% 4.13% 0.83% 33.93%
FTSEurofirst 100 -3.44% 0.43% 3.33% 1.43% 40.13%
MSCI Europe -1.69% 2.42% 4.41% 2.42% 41.31%
STOXX® Europe 600 -1.58% 2.65% 4.62% 2.75% 42.06%
Index   2018
in %
2017
in %
2016
in %
2015
in %
2014
in %
STOXX® Europe 50 -0.42% 13.06% 17.71% 0.37% -0.79%
FTSEurofirst 100 -0.01% 13.22% 22.71% -1.68% -1.55%
STOXX® Europe 600 1.45% 15.31% 18.90% 3.33% 0.28%
MSCI Europe 1.60% 14.28% 19.78% 1.96% -0.17%

Source: justETF.com; As of 31/08/18; Calculations in GBP based on the largest ETF of the respective index.