CAC 40 index hits 30

Jul 4th, 2018 | By | Category: ETF and Index News

Pan-European marketplace Euronext has marked the thirtieth anniversary of the launch of the French bellwether equity index – the CAC 40.

Euronext CAC 40 ETFs

Euronext marked the anniversary of the index launch with a market-opening bell ceremony on the floor of the Euronext Paris stock exchange.

The CAC 40 is the most widely followed reference for the performance of French blue-chip stocks and a gauge of the health of the French economy in general.

The index has more than €6 billion in linked ETF assets under management in Europe.

Unveiled in June 1988, the index measures the share performance of 40 ‘significant’ stocks chosen from the 100 largest firms by market cap listed on Euronext Paris.

The composition is reviewed quarterly by an independent index committee. The 40 constituents are chosen such that the index is “a relevant benchmark for portfolio management” and “a suitable underlying asset for derivatives products”.

The index is weighted by free float market capitalisation subject to an individual constituent cap of 15%.

According to Euronext, “For the companies included in the index, the CAC 40 is a stamp of quality, and a visibility and growth tool allowing them to attract national and international investors.” Current well-known names include Airbus, ArcelorMittal, BNP Paribas, Carrefour, L’Oreal, Michelin, Publicis, Renault, Sanofi, Societe Generale, and Total.

Of the 40 companies included in the index at its launch, 20 companies are components today. Over the 30 years of its existence, 94 companies have been part of the index. Only twelve have held uninterrupted membership of the index since inception.

A total of 19 members from the CAC 40 Index are also constituents of the Euro Stoxx 50 Index, the de facto performance benchmark for blue-chip euro zone stocks.

The largest ETF in Europe to track the CAC 40 is the Lyxor CAC 40 UCITS ETF (CAC FP) with €4.4bn in AUM. It charges a total expense ratio (TER) of 0.25%.

The only other CAC 40 ETF in Europe with more than €1bn in AUM is the €1.1bn Amundi CAC 40 UCITS ETF (C40 FP) which also charges 0.25%.

DWS and Commerzbank offer the cheapest route to CAC 40 exposure at a TER of 0.20%, with their Xtrackers CAC 40 UCITS ETF (XCAC GY) and Comstage CAC40 UCITS ETF (CD40 GY) products. These are much smaller funds, however, with AUM of €150m and €13m respectively.

Nestled between the Amundi and DWS and Commerzbank ETFs is the €220m BNP Paribas Easy CAC 40 UCITS ETF (E40 FP) which charges a TER of 0.25%.

Looking back over the history of the index, the CAC 40 has experienced some notable market moments, marked by critical highs and lows. It has increased more than fourteen-fold since its inception, with a single euro invested in July 1988 being worth €14.25 as of the end of June.

In common with many major world stock markets, its all-time high (6,922 points) was reached at the peak of the dot-com bubble in September 2000.

While the index made significant progress in reclaiming lost ground following the dot-com crash, it peaked again in June 2007 (6,168 points) before the impact of the financial crisis cut its value. It has grown at a more cautious rate since then, experiencing a few minor setbacks along the way, to reach a current level of 5,323 (as of 29 June 2018).

Euronext marked the anniversary of the index launch with a market-opening bell ceremony on the floor of the Euronext Paris stock exchange.

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