LOGO

      AUGUST 31, 2023

 

  

  

2023 Annual Report

 

 

iShares, Inc.

· iShares MSCI Austria ETF | EWO | NYSE Arca

· iShares MSCI Belgium ETF | EWK | NYSE Arca

· iShares MSCI France ETF | EWQ | NYSE Arca

· iShares MSCI Netherlands ETF | EWN | NYSE Arca

· iShares MSCI Sweden ETF | EWD | NYSE Arca


The Markets in Review

Dear Shareholder,

Despite an uncertain economic landscape during the 12-month reporting period ended August 31, 2023, the resilience of the U.S. economy in the face of ever tighter financial conditions provided an encouraging backdrop for investors. While inflation was near multi-decade highs at the beginning of the period, it declined precipitously as commodity prices dropped. Labor shortages also moderated, although wages continued to grow and unemployment rates reached the lowest levels in decades. This robust labor market powered further growth in consumer spending, backstopping the economy.

Equity returns were solid, as the durability of consumer sentiment eased investors’ concerns about the economy’s trajectory. The U.S. economy resumed growth in the third quarter of 2022 and continued to expand thereafter. Most major classes of equities rose, as large-capitalization U.S. stocks and developed market equities advanced strongly. However, small-capitalization U.S. stocks and emerging market equities posted more modest gains.

The 10-year U.S. Treasury yield rose during the reporting period, driving its price down, as investors reacted to elevated inflation and attempted to anticipate future interest rate changes. The corporate bond market also faced inflationary headwinds, although high-yield corporate bond prices fared significantly better than investment-grade bonds as demand from yield-seeking investors remained strong.

The U.S. Federal Reserve (the “Fed”), acknowledging that inflation has been more persistent than expected, raised interest rates seven times during the 12-month period. Furthermore, the Fed wound down its bond-buying programs and incrementally reduced its balance sheet by not replacing securities that reach maturity. However, the Fed declined to raise interest rates at its June 2023 meeting, the first time it paused its tightening in the current cycle, before again raising rates in July 2023.

Supply constraints appear to have become an embedded feature of the new macroeconomic environment, making it difficult for developed economies to increase production without sparking higher inflation. Geopolitical fragmentation and an aging population risk further exacerbating these constraints, keeping the labor market tight and wage growth high. Although the Fed has decelerated the pace of interest rate hikes and recently opted for two pauses, we believe that the new economic regime means that the Fed will need to maintain high rates for an extended period to keep inflation under control. Furthermore, ongoing structural changes may mean that the Fed will be hesitant to cut interest rates in the event of faltering economic activity lest inflation accelerate again. We believe investors should expect a period of higher volatility as markets adjust to the new economic reality and policymakers attempt to adapt.

While we favor an overweight position to developed market equities in the long term, we prefer an underweight stance in the near term. Expectations for corporate earnings remain elevated, which seems inconsistent with macroeconomic constraints. Nevertheless, we are overweight on emerging market stocks in the near term as growth trends for emerging markets appear brighter. We also believe that stocks with an AI tilt should benefit from an investment cycle that is set to support revenues and margins. In credit, there are selective opportunities in the near term despite tightening credit and financial conditions. For fixed income investing with a six- to twelve-month horizon, we see the most attractive investments in short-term U.S. Treasuries, U.S. inflation-linked bonds, U.S. mortgage-backed securities, and hard-currency emerging market bonds.

Overall, our view is that investors need to think globally, position themselves to be prepared for a decarbonizing economy, and be nimble as market conditions change. We encourage you to talk with your financial advisor and visit iShares.com for further insight about investing in today’s markets.

 

 

LOGO

Rob Kapito

President, BlackRock, Inc.

LOGO

Rob Kapito

President, BlackRock, Inc.

 

Total Returns as of August 31, 2023
     
    6-Month   12-Month
     

U.S. large cap equities
(S&P 500® Index)

  14.50%    15.94%
     

U.S. small cap equities

(Russell 2000® Index)

  0.99    4.65   
     

International equities
(MSCI Europe, Australasia, Far East Index)

  4.75   17.92  
     

Emerging market equities
(MSCI Emerging Markets Index)

  3.62    1.25  
     

3-month Treasury bills
(ICE BofA 3-Month U.S. Treasury Bill Index)

  2.47    4.25  
     

U.S. Treasury securities
(ICE BofA 10-Year U.S. Treasury Index)

  0.11   (4.71)
     

U.S. investment grade bonds
(Bloomberg U.S. Aggregate Bond Index)

  0.95   (1.19)
     

Tax-exempt municipal bonds
(Bloomberg Municipal Bond Index)

  1.04    1.70  
     

U.S. high yield bonds
(Bloomberg U.S. Corporate High Yield 2% Issuer Capped Index)

  4.55    7.19  
 
Past performance is not an indication of future results. Index performance is shown for illustrative purposes only. You cannot invest directly in an index.

 

 

2  

T H I S  P A G EI SN O T  P A R TO F  Y O U R  F U N D  R E P O R T


Table of Contents

 

     Page  

 

 

The Markets in Review

     2  

Annual Report:

  

Market Overview

     4  

Fund Summary

     5  

About Fund Performance

     15  

Disclosure of Expenses

     15  

Schedules of Investments

     16  

Financial Statements

  

Statements of Assets and Liabilities

     32  

Statements of Operations

     34  

Statements of Changes in Net Assets

     36  

Financial Highlights

     39  

Notes to Financial Statements

     44  

Report of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm

     54  

Important Tax Information

     55  

Board Review and Approval of Investment Advisory Contract

     56  

Supplemental Information

     58  

Director and Officer Information

     59  

General Information

     61  

Glossary of Terms Used in this Report

     62  

 

 

 


Market Overview

 

iShares, Inc.

Global Market Overview

Global equity markets advanced during the 12 months ended August 31, 2023 (“reporting period”), supported by continued economic growth and moderating inflation. The MSCI ACWI, a broad global equity index that includes both developed and emerging markets, returned 13.95% in U.S. dollar terms for the reporting period. Despite concerns about the impact of higher interest rates and rising prices, the global economy continued to grow, albeit at a slower pace than during the initial post-coronavirus pandemic recovery. Inflation began to subside in most regions of the world, and lower energy prices reduced pressure on consumers, leading consumer and business sentiment to improve. While the Russian invasion of Ukraine continued to disrupt trade in Europe and elsewhere, market adaptation lessened the economic impact of the ongoing war. The prices of several key commodities, including oil, natural gas, and wheat, either stabilized or declined during the reporting period, easing pressure on the world’s economies.

The U.S. Federal Reserve (“Fed”) tightened monetary policy rapidly, raising short-term interest rates seven times over the course of the reporting period. The pace of tightening decelerated as the Fed twice lowered the increment of increase before pausing entirely in June 2023, the first time it declined to take action since the tightening cycle began. However, the Fed then raised interest rates again at its July 2023 meeting and stated that it would continue to monitor economic data. The Fed also continued to decrease the size of its balance sheet by reducing the store of U.S. Treasuries it had accumulated to stabilize markets in the early phases of the pandemic.

Despite the tightening financial conditions, the U.S. economy demonstrated continued strength, and U.S. equities advanced. The economy returned to growth in the third quarter of 2022 and showed robust, if slightly slower, growth thereafter. Consumers powered the economy, increasing their spending in both nominal and inflation-adjusted terms. A strong labor market bolstered spending, as unemployment remained low, and the number of employed persons reached an all-time high. Tightness in the labor market drove higher wages, although wage growth slowed as the reporting period continued.

European stocks outpaced their counterparts in most other regions of the globe, advancing strongly for the reporting period despite modest economic growth. European stocks benefited from a solid recovery following the early phases of the war in Ukraine. While the conflict disrupted critical natural gas supplies, new sources were secured and prices declined, while a warm winter helped moderate consumption. The European Central Bank (“ECB”) responded to the highest inflation since the introduction of the euro by raising interest rates eight times and beginning to reduce the size of its debt holdings.

Stocks in the Asia-Pacific region gained, albeit at a slower pace than other regions of the world. Japan returned to growth in the fourth quarter of 2022 and first half of 2023, as strong business investment and exports helped boost the economy and support Japanese equities. However, Chinese stocks were negatively impacted by slowing economic growth. While investors were initially optimistic following China’s lifting of several pandemic-related lockdowns in December 2022, subsequent performance disappointed, and tensions with the U.S. increased. Emerging market stocks advanced modestly, as the resilient global economic environment reassured investors. The declining value of the U.S. dollar relative to many other currencies and the slowing pace of the Fed’s interest rate increases also supported emerging market stocks.

 

 

4  

2 0 2 3I S H A R E S  A N N U A L  R E P O R TT O  S H A R E H O L D E R S


Fund Summary as of August 31, 2023    iShares® MSCI Austria ETF

 

Investment Objective

The iShares MSCI Austria ETF (the “Fund”) seeks to track the investment results of a broad-based index composed of Austrian equities, as represented by the MSCI Austria IMI 25/50 Index (the “Index”). The Fund invests in a representative sample of securities included in the Index that collectively has an investment profile similar to the Index. Due to the use of representative sampling, the Fund may or may not hold all of the securities that are included in the Index.

Performance

 

    Average Annual Total Returns          Cumulative Total Returns  
     1 Year     5 Years     10 Years             1 Year     5 Years     10 Years  

Fund NAV

    22.61     0.64     4.06%          22.61     3.26     48.85

Fund Market

    22.18       0.69       4.02            22.18       3.50       48.31  

Index

    21.55       0.54       4.08              21.55       2.73       49.13  

GROWTH OF $10,000 INVESTMENT

(AT NET ASSET VALUE)

 

LOGO

Past performance is not an indication of future results. Performance results do not reflect the deduction of taxes that a shareholder would pay on fund distributions or on the redemption or sale of fund shares. See “About Fund Performance” for more information.

Expense Example

 

    Actual           Hypothetical 5% Return           
 

 

 

     

 

 

      
     

Beginning

Account Value

(03/01/23)

 

 

 

      

Ending

Account Value

(08/31/23)

 

 

 

      

Expenses

Paid During

the Period

 

 

(a) 

           

Beginning

Account Value

(03/01/23)

 

 

 

      

Ending

Account Value

(08/31/23)

 

 

 

      

Expenses

Paid During

the Period

 

 

(a) 

      

Annualized

Expense

Ratio

 

 

 

      $  1,000.00          $   972.20          $  2.49                $  1,000.00           $  1,022.70          $  2.55          0.50

 

  (a) 

Expenses are equal to the annualized expense ratio, multiplied by the average account value over the period, multiplied by 184/365 (to reflect the one-half year period shown). Other fees, such as brokerage commissions and other fees to financial intermediaries, may be paid which are not reflected in the tables and examples above. See “Disclosure of Expenses” for more information.

 

 

 

F U N D  S U M M A R Y

    5  


Fund Summary as of August 31, 2023 (continued)    iShares® MSCI Austria ETF

 

Portfolio Management Commentary

Austrian stocks advanced for the reporting period, as investors responded to historically low valuations, falling inflation rates, and a shift by the ECB to less restrictive monetary policy. Inflation in Austria rose to 11.2% in January 2023, the highest rate since 1958, then fell to 7.5% in August 2023. The ECB responded to the Eurozone’s highest-ever inflation with its fastest pace of interest rate increases ever, before signaling late in the reporting period that rates could be near a peak. Austria, which continued to be highly dependent on imports of Russian natural gas, also secured additional sources of energy and replenished its stockpiles, while a warm winter helped moderate consumption. Nevertheless, economic growth was flat to negative during the reporting period as higher interest rates slowed consumer spending.

The financials sector contributed the most to the Index’s performance, as the country’s largest bank advanced, as did other prominent banks. The largest bank drove the banking industry’s gains after posting higher profits, mainly from high interest income as loan volume strengthened and higher interest rates increased the gap between the rates the banks charge for loans and the lower rates they pay for deposits. Trading activity in financial markets also increased profits, while a relatively stable credit environment in Austria and neighboring countries limited the amount of loans that banks deemed potentially troubled. Stronger profits from interest income and trading offset higher expenses, mainly from growing employee salaries.

The energy sector also contributed to the Index’s performance, particularly the oil, gas, and consumable fuels industry. Despite lower natural gas prices, the stock of a prominent Austrian fuel provider climbed after securing backup sources while continuing to buy a majority of supply from Russia.

Portfolio Information

 

SECTOR ALLOCATION

 

   

Sector

   

Percent of

Total Investments

 

(a) 

Financials     36.9
Industrials     14.6  
Energy     14.3  
Utilities     12.6  
Materials     11.4  
Real Estate     6.2  
Information Technology     2.8  
Consumer Staples     1.2  
TEN LARGEST HOLDINGS

 

   

Security

   

Percent of

Total Investments

 

(a) 

Erste Group Bank AG     22.1
OMV AG     12.4  
Verbund AG     9.9  
ANDRITZ AG     4.8  
Raiffeisen Bank International AG     4.6  
BAWAG Group AG     4.6  
Wienerberger AG     4.4  
voestalpine AG     4.4  
CA Immobilien Anlagen AG     3.9  
Oesterreichische Post AG     3.1  

 

  (a) 

Excludes money market funds.

 

 

 

6  

2 0 2 3I S H A R E S  A N N U A L  R E P O R TT O  S H A R E H O L D E R S


Fund Summary as of August 31, 2023    iShares® MSCI Belgium ETF

 

Investment Objective

The iShares MSCI Belgium ETF (the “Fund”) seeks to track the investment results of a broad-based index composed of Belgian equities, as represented by the MSCI Belgium IMI 25/50 Index (the “Index”). The Fund invests in a representative sample of securities included in the Index that collectively has an investment profile similar to the Index. Due to the use of representative sampling, the Fund may or may not hold all of the securities that are included in the Index.

Performance

 

    Average Annual Total Returns          Cumulative Total Returns  
     1 Year     5 Years     10 Years             1 Year     5 Years     10 Years  

Fund NAV

    16.16     1.06     5.09%          16.16     5.40     64.36

Fund Market

    16.53       1.22       5.11            16.53       6.26       64.60  

Index

    14.32       (0.15     4.49            14.32       (0.75     55.17  

GROWTH OF $10,000 INVESTMENT

(AT NET ASSET VALUE)

 

LOGO

Past performance is not an indication of future results. Performance results do not reflect the deduction of taxes that a shareholder would pay on fund distributions or on the redemption or sale of fund shares. See “About Fund Performance” for more information.

Expense Example

 

    Actual           Hypothetical 5% Return           
 

 

 

     

 

 

      
     

Beginning

Account Value

(03/01/23)

 

 

 

      

Ending

Account Value

(08/31/23)

 

 

 

      

Expenses

Paid During

the Period

 

 

(a) 

           

Beginning

Account Value

(03/01/23)

 

 

 

      

Ending

Account Value

(08/31/23)

 

 

 

      

Expenses

Paid During

the Period

 

 

(a) 

      

Annualized

Expense

Ratio

 

 

 

      $  1,000.00          $   994.90          $  2.51                $  1,000.00           $  1,022.70          $  2.55          0.50

 

  (a) 

Expenses are equal to the annualized expense ratio, multiplied by the average account value over the period, multiplied by 184/365 (to reflect the one-half year period shown). Other fees, such as brokerage commissions and other fees to financial intermediaries, may be paid which are not reflected in the tables and examples above. See “Disclosure of Expenses” for more information.

 

 

 

F U N D  S U M M A R Y

    7  


Fund Summary as of August 31, 2023 (continued)    iShares® MSCI Belgium ETF

 

Portfolio Management Commentary

Belgian stocks advanced for the reporting period as the economy continued to grow, albeit at a slow pace, driven by strong household spending. Despite rising interest rates, Belgian unemployment remained near historic lows, and the Belgian wage system triggered automatic wage and pension increases for many public and private sector employees, encouraging spending even as prices rose.

The healthcare sector contributed the most to the Index’s performance, particularly the biotechnology industry. The stock price of one prominent biotechnology company rose sharply higher following positive results from a clinical study into the effectiveness of a drug to treat a rare autoimmune nerve disease. The study demonstrated a lower risk of relapse, and patients tolerated the drug well, raising investor optimism that regulators will approve the treatment.

The consumer staples sector further contributed to the Index’s performance, amid strength in the beverages industry. China, the world’s largest beer market, raised expectations of a rebound in beer sales as it announced plans to begin gradually easing stringent measures to contain COVID-19, including reopening businesses and allowing travel between different parts of the country. Consumers also increasingly bought premium-priced beers, raising profit margins.

The financials sector also contributed, led by the banking industry. Banks posted higher profits amid high interest income, as loan volume strengthened and higher interest rates increased the gap between the rates the banks charge for loans and the low rates they pay for deposits. Insurance sales, particularly life insurance, rose sharply, and trading activity in financial markets supported increased profits.

Conversely, the real estate sector detracted from the Index’s return. Stocks of diversified REITs declined as bond yields rose, offering income-seeking investors an alternative investment at a competitive payout.

Portfolio Information

 

SECTOR ALLOCATION

 

   

Sector

   

Percent of

Total Investments

 

(a) 

Consumer Staples     26.3
Health Care     20.9  
Financials     19.1  
Real Estate     10.5  
Materials     9.9  
Industrials     3.3  
Consumer Discretionary     2.3  
Utilities     2.2  
Information Technology     2.2  
Energy     2.0  
Communication Services     1.3  
TEN LARGEST HOLDINGS

 

   

Security

   

Percent of

Total Investments

 

(a) 

Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV     22.6
Argenx SE     14.2  
KBC Group NV     8.0  
Solvay SA     4.6  
UCB SA     4.5  
Groupe Bruxelles Lambert NV     4.4  
Ageas SA/NV     3.7  
Umicore SA     3.2  
Warehouses De Pauw CVA     2.7  
D’ieteren Group     2.3  
  (a) 

Excludes money market funds.

 

 

 

8  

2 0 2 3I S H A R E S  A N N U A L  R E P O R TT O  S H A R E H O L D E R S


Fund Summary as of August 31, 2023    iShares® MSCI France ETF

 

Investment Objective

The iShares MSCI France ETF (the “Fund”) seeks to track the investment results of an index composed of French equities, as represented by the MSCI France Index (the “Index”). The Fund invests in a representative sample of securities included in the Index that collectively has an investment profile similar to the Index. Due to the use of representative sampling, the Fund may or may not hold all of the securities that are included in the Index.

Performance

 

    Average Annual Total Returns          Cumulative Total Returns  
     1 Year     5 Years     10 Years             1 Year     5 Years     10 Years  

Fund NAV

    30.82     6.73     6.98%          30.82     38.48     96.29

Fund Market

    30.37       6.83       6.96            30.37       39.11       96.02  

Index

    29.83       6.25       6.72              29.83       35.43       91.57  

GROWTH OF $10,000 INVESTMENT

(AT NET ASSET VALUE)

 

LOGO

Past performance is not an indication of future results. Performance results do not reflect the deduction of taxes that a shareholder would pay on fund distributions or on the redemption or sale of fund shares. See “About Fund Performance” for more information.

Expense Example

 

    Actual           Hypothetical 5% Return           
 

 

 

     

 

 

      
     

Beginning

Account Value

(03/01/23)

 

 

 

      

Ending

Account Value

(08/31/23)

 

 

 

      

Expenses

Paid During

the Period

 

 

(a) 

           

Beginning

Account Value

(03/01/23)

 

 

 

      

Ending

Account Value

(08/31/23)

 

 

 

      

Expenses

Paid During

the Period

 

 

(a) 

      

Annualized

Expense

Ratio

 

 

 

      $  1,000.00          $   1,053.90          $  2.80                $  1,000.00           $  1,022.50          $  2.75          0.54

 

  (a) 

Expenses are equal to the annualized expense ratio, multiplied by the average account value over the period, multiplied by 184/365 (to reflect the one-half year period shown). Other fees, such as brokerage commissions and other fees to financial intermediaries, may be paid which are not reflected in the tables and examples above. See “Disclosure of Expenses” for more information.

 

 

 

F U N D  S U M M A R Y

    9  


Fund Summary as of August 31, 2023 (continued)    iShares® MSCI France ETF

 

Portfolio Management Commentary

French stocks rose during the reporting period, as strong exports bolstered slow economic growth. France’s economy weathered the turbulence of 2022 relatively well due to its lower reliance on Russian gas and interventions by the French government to control energy prices. Higher interest rates helped lower inflation in 2023, but French consumers remained pessimistic and household consumption weakened.

The industrials sector contributed the most to the Index’s performance, led by the aerospace and defense industry. French manufacturers of jets and engines overcame supply chain challenges to increase deliveries of new planes, and orders rose as air travel recovered. France’s electrical equipment industry benefited from operations in the U.S., where new government incentives to encourage investment in clean energy and infrastructure projects increased demand for microgrids, industrial automation systems, and energy management software.

The French consumer discretionary sector also contributed to the Index. The textiles and apparel industry posted solid sales of luxury goods in Europe and Asia following a resurgence in international travel and the end of China’s COVID-19 lockdowns. That helped offset declining sales of luxury products in North America, as many American consumers curtailed spending or purchased expensive goods while vacationing in Europe.

The financials sector added to the Index’s gains. French banks posted stronger profits, as higher interest rates helped banks increase the gap between the interest they charge for loans and the interest they pay on customer deposits. However, government regulations that cap mortgage rates and link the interest on popular savings accounts to inflation limited the benefits of higher interest rates.

The healthcare sector also supported the Index’s performance. The stock of a French pharmaceutical company climbed after reporting of positive late-stage clinical trial results for a drug to treat a common chronic lung disease.

Portfolio Information

 

SECTOR ALLOCATION

 

   

Sector

   

Percent of

Total Investments

 

(a) 

Industrials     22.3
Consumer Discretionary     21.1  
Health Care     10.8  
Consumer Staples     10.6  
Financials     10.5  
Energy     7.5  
Materials     6.1  
Information Technology     4.8  
Utilities     2.7  
Communication Services     2.6  
Real Estate     1.0  
TEN LARGEST HOLDINGS

 

   

Security

   

Percent of

Total Investments

 

(a) 

LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE     12.5
TotalEnergies SE     7.5  
Sanofi     6.5  
L’Oreal SA     5.7  
Air Liquide SA     5.1  
Schneider Electric SE     5.0  
Airbus SE     4.6  
BNP Paribas SA     3.6  
Hermes International     3.5  
Vinci SA     3.2  
  (a) 

Excludes money market funds.

 

 

 

10  

2 0 2 3I S H A R E S  A N N U A L  R E P O R TT O  S H A R E H O L D E R S


Fund Summary as of August 31, 2023    iShares® MSCI Netherlands ETF

 

Investment Objective

The iShares MSCI Netherlands ETF (the “Fund”) seeks to track the investment results of a broad-based index composed of Dutch equities, as represented by the MSCI Netherlands IMI 25/50 Index (the “Index”). The Fund invests in a representative sample of securities included in the Index that collectively has an investment profile similar to the Index. Due to the use of representative sampling, the Fund may or may not hold all of the securities that are included in the Index.

Performance

 

    Average Annual Total Returns          Cumulative Total Returns  
     1 Year     5 Years     10 Years           1 Year     5 Years     10 Years  

Fund NAV

    22.27     7.53     8.23%          22.27     43.80     120.50

Fund Market

    22.51       7.63       8.24          22.51       44.41       120.75  

Index

    22.78       8.09       8.61            22.78       47.53       128.31  

GROWTH OF $10,000 INVESTMENT

(AT NET ASSET VALUE)

 

LOGO

Index performance through August 31, 2017 reflects the performance of the MSCI Netherlands Investable Market Index. Index performance beginning on September 1, 2017 reflects the performance of the MSCI Netherlands IMI 25/50 Index.

Past performance is not an indication of future results. Performance results do not reflect the deduction of taxes that a shareholder would pay on fund distributions or on the redemption or sale of fund shares. See “About Fund Performance” for more information.

Expense Example

 

    Actual           Hypothetical 5% Return           
 

 

 

     

 

 

      
     

Beginning

Account Value

(03/01/23)

 

 

 

      

Ending

Account Value

(08/31/23)

 

 

 

      

Expenses

Paid During

the Period

 

 

(a) 

           

Beginning

Account Value

(03/01/23)

 

 

 

      

Ending

Account Value

(08/31/23)

 

 

 

      

Expenses

Paid During

the Period

 

 

(a) 

      

Annualized

Expense

Ratio

 

 

 

      $  1,000.00          $   1,023.00          $  2.55                $  1,000.00           $  1,022.70          $  2.55          0.50

 

  (a) 

Expenses are equal to the annualized expense ratio, multiplied by the average account value over the period, multiplied by 184/365 (to reflect the one-half year period shown). Other fees, such as brokerage commissions and other fees to financial intermediaries, may be paid which are not reflected in the tables and examples above. See “Disclosure of Expenses” for more information.

 

 

 

F U N D  S U M M A R Y

    11  


Fund Summary as of August 31, 2023 (continued)    iShares® MSCI Netherlands ETF

 

Portfolio Management Commentary

Stocks in the Netherlands advanced during the reporting period, despite the weakening Dutch economy, as the market rebounded from a sharp downturn in 2022 following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The Netherlands fell into a technical recession during the first half of 2023, as exports weakened and household spending dropped. Although average wages climbed and the unemployment rate remained relatively low, consumers grew more pessimistic about the economic outlook amid higher interest rates and the sudden collapse of the country’s coalition government over migration policy in July 2023. The ECB’s rapid interest rate increases helped drive down inflation in the Netherlands, which fell sharply from a peak of 14.5% in September 2022 to 3% in August 2023.

The information technology sector contributed the most to the Index’s performance. The semiconductors and semiconductor equipment industry advanced strongly amid growing investor optimism over the future of artificial intelligence (“AI”) applications. A large Dutch company benefited notably as the world’s only manufacturer of extreme ultraviolet lithography machines used to make the fast microprocessors necessary for AI applications, a position that supports the firm’s pricing strength. Increased shipments to microprocessor producers strengthened earnings, and the stock climbed higher. However, the prospect of new Dutch export restrictions on shipments of advanced technology to China set to take effect in September 2023 weighed on the industry outlook.

The financials sector also added to the Index’s return. Banks reported stronger profits, as higher interest rates helped banks increase the gap between the interest they charge for loans and the interest they pay on customer deposits. Although the economy weakened in the Netherlands and across the E.U., banks were able to reduce their loan loss provisions related to Russia from 2022.

Portfolio Information

 

SECTOR ALLOCATION

 

   

Sector

   

Percent of

Total Investments

 

(a) 

Information Technology     28.3
Financials     18.7  
Industrials     14.3  
Consumer Staples     12.9  
Consumer Discretionary     8.7  
Materials     6.2  
Communication Services     4.9  
Health Care     3.7  
Energy     1.2  
Real Estate     1.1  
TEN LARGEST HOLDINGS

 

   

Security

   

Percent of

Total Investments

 

(a) 

ASML Holding NV     22.6
ING Groep NV     7.8  
Prosus NV     7.4  
Wolters Kluwer NV     4.5  
Koninklijke Ahold Delhaize NV     4.4  
Heineken NV     4.0  
ASM International NV     3.5  
Koninklijke Philips NV     3.3  
Universal Music Group NV     3.0  
Adyen NV     2.6  
  (a) 

Excludes money market funds.

 

 

 

12  

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Fund Summary as of August 31, 2023    iShares® MSCI Sweden ETF

 

Investment Objective

The iShares MSCI Sweden ETF (the “Fund”) seeks to track the investment results of an index composed of Swedish equities, as represented by the MSCI Sweden 25/50 Index (the “Index”). The Fund invests in a representative sample of securities included in the Index that collectively has an investment profile similar to the Index. Due to the use of representative sampling, the Fund may or may not hold all of the securities that are included in the Index.

Performance

 

    Average Annual Total Returns          Cumulative Total Returns  
     1 Year     5 Years     10 Years             1 Year     5 Years     10 Years  

Fund NAV

    11.35     3.84     3.87%          11.35     20.76     46.22

Fund Market

    11.40       3.83       3.87            11.40       20.67       46.13  

Index

    10.32       3.40       3.34              10.32       18.18       38.91  

GROWTH OF $10,000 INVESTMENT

(AT NET ASSET VALUE)

 

LOGO

Index performance through November 30, 2016 reflects the performance of the MSCI Sweden Index. Index performance beginning on December 1, 2016 reflects the performance of the MSCI Sweden 25/50 Index.

Past performance is not an indication of future results. Performance results do not reflect the deduction of taxes that a shareholder would pay on fund distributions or on the redemption or sale of fund shares. See “About Fund Performance” for more information.

Expense Example

 

    Actual           Hypothetical 5% Return           
 

 

 

     

 

 

      
     

Beginning

Account Value

(03/01/23)

 

 

 

      

Ending

Account Value

(08/31/23)

 

 

 

      

Expenses

Paid During

the Period

 

 

(a) 

           

Beginning

Account Value

(03/01/23)

 

 

 

      

Ending

Account Value

(08/31/23)

 

 

 

      

Expenses

Paid During

the Period

 

 

(a) 

      

Annualized

Expense

Ratio

 

 

 

      $  1,000.00          $   943.30          $  2.74                $  1,000.00           $  1,022.40          $  2.85          0.56

 

  (a) 

Expenses are equal to the annualized expense ratio, multiplied by the average account value over the period, multiplied by 184/365 (to reflect the one-half year period shown). Other fees, such as brokerage commissions and other fees to financial intermediaries, may be paid which are not reflected in the tables and examples above. See “Disclosure of Expenses” for more information.

 

 

 

F U N D  S U M M A R Y

    13  


Fund Summary as of August 31, 2023 (continued)    iShares® MSCI Sweden ETF

 

Portfolio Management Commentary

Stocks in Sweden advanced during the reporting period despite weaker economic growth, reflecting the slowing rate of inflation and anticipation of less restrictive monetary policy. Sweden’s inflation peaked at 12.3% in December 2022 and subsequently declined to a low of 7.5% in August 2023 as electricity costs dropped. Declining inflation in Sweden and other countries in the Eurozone led the ECB to slow its fastest-ever pace of interest rate increases, leading to investor anticipation of less restrictive policy.

The industrials sector contributed the most to the Index’s performance. The machinery industry benefited from increased orders for industrial compressors and various industrial tools, especially from manufacturers of electric vehicles and batteries. Orders and deliveries of commercial and industrial trucks increased despite supply chain constraints on production. Sales of electric trucks were particularly strong as companies committed to reducing carbon emissions.

The financials sector also contributed to the Index’s return, led by the banking industry. Banks posted higher profits amid high interest income, as corporate loan volume strengthened and higher interest rates increased the gap between the rates banks charge for loans and the low rates they pay for deposits. Despite economic challenges in Sweden and neighboring Nordic countries, provisions for expected losses from unpaid loans continued to remain at low levels.

On the downside, the information technology sector detracted from the Index’s performance. The communications equipment industry posted lower profits as the weakening economic outlook and elevated inflation led telecommunication providers to cut budgets.

In addition, the communication services sector detracted from the Index’s return, led by the diversified telecommunication services industry. High electricity costs and increased interest expense weakened the profits of telecommunication providers.

Portfolio Information

 

SECTOR ALLOCATION

 

   

Sector

   

Percent of

Total Investments

 

(a) 

Industrials     45.2
Financials     28.5  
Information Technology     7.2  
Consumer Discretionary     6.9  
Materials     4.1  
Consumer Staples     3.1  
Communication Services     1.8  
Health Care     1.6  
Real Estate     1.6  
TEN LARGEST HOLDINGS

 

   

Security

   

Percent of

Total Investments

 

(a) 

Atlas Copco AB, Class A     7.7
Nordea Bank Abp     7.6  
Investor AB, Class B     7.2  
Volvo AB, Class B     6.6  
Assa Abloy AB, Class B     4.9  
Sandvik AB     4.4  
Evolution AB     4.3  
Hexagon AB, Class B     4.0  
Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken AB, Class A     4.0  
Atlas Copco AB, Class B     3.9  
  (a) 

Excludes money market funds.

 

 

 

14  

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About Fund Performance

 

Past performance is not an indication of future results. Financial markets have experienced extreme volatility and trading in many instruments has been disrupted. These circumstances may continue for an extended period of time and may continue to affect adversely the value and liquidity of each Fund’s investments. As a result, current performance may be lower or higher than the performance data quoted. Performance data current to the most recent month-end is available at iShares.com. Performance results assume reinvestment of all dividends and capital gain distributions and do not reflect the deduction of taxes that a shareholder would pay on fund distributions or on the redemption or sale of fund shares. The investment return and principal value of shares will vary with changes in market conditions. Shares may be worth more or less than their original cost when they are redeemed or sold in the market. Performance for certain funds may reflect a waiver of a portion of investment advisory fees. Without such a waiver, performance would have been lower.

Net asset value or “NAV” is the value of one share of a fund as calculated in accordance with the standard formula for valuing mutual fund shares. Beginning August 10, 2020, the price used to calculate market return (“Market Price”) is the closing price. Prior to August 10, 2020, Market Price was determined using the midpoint between the highest bid and the lowest ask on the primary stock exchange on which shares of a fund are listed for trading, as of the time that such fund’s NAV is calculated. Market and NAV returns assume that dividends and capital gain distributions have been reinvested at Market Price and NAV, respectively.

An index is a statistical composite that tracks a specified financial market or sector. Unlike a fund, an index does not actually hold a portfolio of securities and therefore does not incur the expenses incurred by a fund. These expenses negatively impact fund performance. Also, market returns do not include brokerage commissions that may be payable on secondary market transactions. If brokerage commissions were included, market returns would be lower.

Disclosure of Expenses

Shareholders of each Fund may incur the following charges: (1) transactional expenses, including brokerage commissions on purchases and sales of fund shares and (2) ongoing expenses, including management fees and other fund expenses. The expense examples shown (which are based on a hypothetical investment of $1,000 invested at the beginning of the period and held through the end of the period) are intended to assist shareholders both in calculating expenses based on an investment in each Fund and in comparing these expenses with similar costs of investing in other funds.

The expense examples provide information about actual account values and actual expenses. Annualized expense ratios reflect contractual and voluntary fee waivers, if any. In order to estimate the expenses a shareholder paid during the period covered by this report, shareholders can divide their account value by $1,000 and then multiply the result by the number under the heading entitled “Expenses Paid During the Period.”

The expense examples also provide information about hypothetical account values and hypothetical expenses based on a fund’s actual expense ratio and an assumed rate of return of 5% per year before expenses. In order to assist shareholders in comparing the ongoing expenses of investing in the Funds and other funds, compare the 5% hypothetical examples with the 5% hypothetical examples that appear in the shareholder reports of the other funds.

The expenses shown in the expense examples are intended to highlight shareholders’ ongoing costs only and do not reflect any transactional expenses, such as brokerage commissions and other fees paid on purchases and sales of fund shares. Therefore, the hypothetical examples are useful in comparing ongoing expenses only and will not help shareholders determine the relative total expenses of owning different funds. If these transactional expenses were included, shareholder expenses would have been higher.

 

 

A B O U T  F U N D  P E R F O R M A N C E

  15


Schedule of Investments

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI Austria ETF

(Percentages shown are based on Net Assets)

 

Security   Shares     Value  

 

 

Common Stocks

   
Air Freight & Logistics — 3.1%            

Oesterreichische Post AG(a)

    47,813     $ 1,646,597  
   

 

 

 
Banks — 30.6%            

BAWAG Group AG(b)

    50,662       2,386,825  

Erste Group Bank AG

    326,003       11,629,782  

Raiffeisen Bank International AG(c)

    168,452       2,417,792  
   

 

 

 
       16,434,399  
Chemicals — 2.6%            

Lenzing AG(c)

    29,127       1,381,645  
   

 

 

 
Commercial Services & Supplies — 2.4%            

DO & CO AG

    10,895       1,268,824  
   

 

 

 
Construction & Engineering — 1.2%            

Porr AG

    51,305       670,929  
   

 

 

 
Construction Materials — 4.3%            

Wienerberger AG

    84,029       2,313,023  
   

 

 

 
Electric Utilities — 12.3%            

EVN AG

    56,358       1,395,174  

Verbund AG

    63,660       5,209,887  
   

 

 

 
      6,605,061  
Electronic Equipment, Instruments & Components — 2.8%  

AT&S Austria Technologie & Systemtechnik AG

    41,639       1,483,541  
   

 

 

 
Energy Equipment & Services — 1.8%            

Schoeller-Bleckmann Oilfield Equipment AG

    17,774       988,003  
   

 

 

 
Food Products — 1.2%            

Agrana Beteiligungs AG

    37,552       635,225  
   

 

 

 
Insurance — 5.5%            

UNIQA Insurance Group AG

    179,938       1,448,558  

Vienna Insurance Group AG Wiener Versicherung Gruppe

    56,014       1,501,599  
   

 

 

 
      2,950,157  
Machinery — 7.6%            

ANDRITZ AG

    47,809       2,539,623  

Palfinger AG(a)

    32,131       857,213  
Security   Shares     Value  

 

 
Machinery (continued)            

Semperit AG Holding

    29,135     $ 695,348  
   

 

 

 
      4,092,184  
Metals & Mining — 4.3%            

voestalpine AG(a)

    78,578       2,295,991  
   

 

 

 
Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels — 12.1%            

OMV AG

    140,171       6,491,034  
   

 

 

 
Real Estate Management & Development — 6.1%        

CA Immobilien Anlagen AG

    61,304       2,033,121  

Immofinanz AG(c)

    63,906       1,231,307  
   

 

 

 
      3,264,428  
   

 

 

 

Total Long-Term Investments — 97.9%
(Cost: $62,171,567)

      52,521,041  
   

 

 

 

Short-Term Securities

   
Money Market Funds — 3.4%            

BlackRock Cash Funds: Institutional, SL Agency Shares, 5.52%(d)(e)(f)

    1,812,465       1,813,009  

BlackRock Cash Funds: Treasury, SL Agency Shares, 5.31%(d)(e)

    20,000       20,000  
   

 

 

 

Total Short-Term Securities — 3.4%
(Cost: $1,832,990)

      1,833,009  
   

 

 

 

Total Investments — 101.3%
(Cost: $64,004,557)

      54,354,050  

Liabilities in Excess of Other Assets — (1.3)%

 

    (705,394
   

 

 

 

Net Assets — 100.0%

    $  53,648,656  
   

 

 

 

 

(a) 

All or a portion of this security is on loan.

(b) 

Security exempt from registration pursuant to Rule 144A under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended. These securities may be resold in transactions exempt from registration to qualified institutional investors.

(c) 

Non-income producing security.

(d) 

Affiliate of the Fund.

(e) 

Annualized 7-day yield as of period end.

(f) 

All or a portion of this security was purchased with the cash collateral from loaned securities.

 

 

16  

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Schedule of Investments  (continued)

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI Austria ETF

 

Affiliates

Investments in issuers considered to be affiliate(s) of the Fund during the year ended August 31, 2023 for purposes of Section 2(a)(3) of the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended, were as follows:

 

 

 
Affiliated Issuer  

Value at

08/31/22

   

Purchases

at Cost

   

Proceeds

from Sale

   

Net Realized

Gain (Loss)

   

Change in

Unrealized

Appreciation

(Depreciation)

   

Value at

08/31/23

   

Shares

Held at

08/31/23

    Income    

Capital

Gain

Distributions

from

Underlying

Funds

 

 

 

BlackRock Cash Funds: Institutional, SL Agency Shares

  $ 1,916,168     $     $ (104,502 )(a)    $ 2,278     $ (935   $ 1,813,009       1,812,465     $ 257,487 (b)    $  

BlackRock Cash Funds: Treasury, SL Agency Shares

    20,000       0 (a)                         20,000       20,000       1,899        
       

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

     

 

 

   

 

 

 
        $ 2,278     $ (935   $ 1,833,009       $ 259,386     $  
       

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

     

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

  (a) 

Represents net amount purchased (sold).

 
  (b) 

All or a portion represents securities lending income earned from the reinvestment of cash collateral from loaned securities, net of fees and collateral investment expenses, and other payments to and from borrowers of securities.

 

Derivative Financial Instruments Outstanding as of Period End

Futures Contracts

 

 

 
Description  

Number of

Contracts

   

Expiration

Date

   

Notional

Amount

(000)

   

Value/

Unrealized

Appreciation

(Depreciation)

 

 

 

Long Contracts

       

Euro STOXX 50 Index

    24       09/15/23     $ 1,120     $ (11,473
       

 

 

 

Derivative Financial Instruments Categorized by Risk Exposure

As of period end, the fair values of derivative financial instruments located in the Statements of Assets and Liabilities were as follows:

 

 

 
   

Commodity

Contracts

   

Credit

Contracts

   

Equity

Contracts

   

Foreign

Currency

Exchange

Contracts

   

Interest

Rate

Contracts

   

Other

Contracts

    Total  

 

 

Liabilities — Derivative Financial Instruments

             

Futures contracts

             

Unrealized depreciation on futures contracts(a)

  $     $     $ 11,473     $     $     $     $ 11,473  
 

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

  (a) 

Net cumulative unrealized appreciation (depreciation) on futures contracts are reported in the Schedule of Investments. In the Statements of Assets and Liabilities, only current day’s variation margin is reported in receivables or payables and the net cumulative unrealized appreciation (depreciation) is included in accumulated earnings (loss).

 

For the period ended August 31, 2023, the effect of derivative financial instruments in the Statements of Operations was as follows:

 

 

 
   

Commodity

Contracts

   

Credit

Contracts

   

Equity

Contracts

   

Foreign

Currency

Exchange

Contracts

   

Interest

Rate

Contracts

   

Other

Contracts

    Total  

 

 

Net Realized Gain (Loss) from

             

Futures contracts

  $     $     $ 216,749     $     $     $     $ 216,749  
 

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Net Change in Unrealized Appreciation (Depreciation) on

             

Futures contracts

  $     $     $ (16,942   $     $     $     $ (16,942
 

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Average Quarterly Balances of Outstanding Derivative Financial Instruments

 

 

 

Futures contracts:

 

Average notional value of contracts — long

  $ 984,581    

 

 

For more information about the Fund’s investment risks regarding derivative financial instruments, refer to the Notes to Financial Statements.

 

 

S C H E D U L EO F  I N V E S T M E N T S

  17


Schedule of Investments  (continued)

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI Austria ETF

 

Fair Value Hierarchy as of Period End

Various inputs are used in determining the fair value of financial instruments. For a description of the input levels and information about the Fund’s policy regarding valuation of financial instruments, refer to the Notes to Financial Statements.

The following table summarizes the Fund’s financial instruments categorized in the fair value hierarchy. The breakdown of the Fund’s financial instruments into major categories is disclosed in the Schedule of Investments above.

 

 

 
     Level 1        Level 2      Level 3        Total  

 

 

Assets

               

Investments

               

Long-Term Investments

               

Common Stocks

   $ 2,574,978        $ 49,946,063      $        $ 52,521,041  

Short-Term Securities

               

Money Market Funds

     1,833,009                          1,833,009  
  

 

 

      

 

 

    

 

 

      

 

 

 
   $  4,407,987        $ 49,946,063      $        $ 54,354,050  
  

 

 

      

 

 

    

 

 

      

 

 

 

Derivative Financial Instruments(a)

               

Liabilities

               

Equity Contracts

   $        $ (11,473    $    —        $ (11,473
  

 

 

      

 

 

    

 

 

      

 

 

 

 

  (a) 

Derivative financial instruments are futures contracts. Futures contracts are valued at the unrealized appreciation (depreciation) on the instrument.

 

See notes to financial statements.

 

 

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Schedule of Investments 

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI Belgium ETF

(Percentages shown are based on Net Assets)

 

Security   Shares     Value  

 

 

Common Stocks

   
Air Freight & Logistics — 0.4%            

bpost SA(a)

    18,186     $ 85,615  
   

 

 

 
Banks — 8.9%            

KBC Ancora

    4,605       204,151  

KBC Group NV

    24,370       1,598,918  
   

 

 

 
      1,803,069  
Beverages — 22.3%            

Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV

    79,991       4,540,449  
   

 

 

 
Biotechnology — 15.1%            

Argenx SE(b)

    5,682       2,855,684  

Galapagos NV(b)

    5,789       218,811  
   

 

 

 
      3,074,495  
Chemicals — 8.6%            

Recticel SA(a)

    7,270       79,796  

Solvay SA

    7,948       920,359  

Tessenderlo Group SA

    3,849       119,342  

Umicore SA

    24,012       636,276  
   

 

 

 
      1,755,773  
Construction & Engineering — 2.8%            

Ackermans & van Haaren NV

    2,787       438,684  

Deme Group NV

    1,136       132,911  
   

 

 

 
      571,595  
Consumer Staples Distribution & Retail — 1.4%            

Etablissements Franz Colruyt NV

    7,547       287,803  
   

 

 

 
Distributors — 2.3%            

D’ieteren Group

    2,858       466,780  
   

 

 

 
Diversified Telecommunication Services — 0.8%        

Proximus SADP

    20,946       158,310  
   

 

 

 
Electric Utilities — 2.2%            

Elia Group SA/NV

    3,880       447,343  
   

 

 

 
Electronic Equipment, Instruments & Components — 1.0%  

Barco NV

    8,990       192,968  
   

 

 

 
Entertainment — 0.5%            

Kinepolis Group NV

    2,155       102,358  
   

 

 

 
Financial Services — 6.4%            

Groupe Bruxelles Lambert NV

    11,076       891,877  

Sofina SA

    1,834       412,040  
   

 

 

 
       1,303,917  
Food Products — 1.9%            

Lotus Bakeries NV

    48       378,395  
   

 

 

 
Health Care Providers & Services — 0.8%            

Fagron

    9,583       170,968  
   

 

 

 
Health Care REITs — 3.5%            

Aedifica SA

    5,688       380,919  

Cofinimmo SA

    4,111       320,296  
   

 

 

 
      701,215  
Health Care Technology — 0.3%            

AGFA-Gevaert NV(b)

    26,641       60,811  
   

 

 

 
Security   Shares     Value  

 

 
Industrial REITs — 3.8%            

Intervest Offices & Warehouses NV

    5,043     $ 79,073  

Montea NV

    1,904       152,834  

Warehouses De Pauw CVA

    19,118       546,326  
   

 

 

 
      778,233  
Insurance — 3.6%            

Ageas SA/NV

    18,477       734,835  
   

 

 

 
Metals & Mining — 1.1%            

Bekaert SA

    4,793       227,267  
   

 

 

 
Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels — 1.9%            

Euronav NV

    19,673       342,636  

Exmar NV

    4,089       50,276  
   

 

 

 
      392,912  
Personal Care Products — 0.5%            

Ontex Group NV(b)

    11,354       91,873  
   

 

 

 
Pharmaceuticals — 4.5%            

UCB SA

    10,084       904,505  
   

 

 

 
Real Estate Management & Development — 2.0%        

Immobel SA(a)

    1,437       52,227  

Shurgard Self Storage Ltd.

    3,651       167,636  

VGP NV

    1,811       189,068  
   

 

 

 
      408,931  
Residential REITs — 0.6%            

Xior Student Housing NV

    4,218       123,753  
   

 

 

 
Retail REITs — 0.5%            

Retail Estates NV

    1,692       104,158  
   

 

 

 
Semiconductors & Semiconductor Equipment — 1.2%        

Melexis NV

    2,554       240,845  
   

 

 

 

Total Long-Term Investments — 98.9%
(Cost: $26,290,729)

      20,109,176  
   

 

 

 

Short-Term Securities

   
Money Market Funds — 0.7%            

BlackRock Cash Funds: Institutional, SL Agency Shares, 5.52%(c)(d)(e)

    137,250       137,291  

BlackRock Cash Funds: Treasury, SL Agency Shares, 5.31%(c)(d)

    10,000       10,000  
   

 

 

 

Total Short-Term Securities — 0.7%
(Cost: $147,293)

      147,291  
   

 

 

 

Total Investments — 99.6%
(Cost: $26,438,022)

      20,256,467  

Other Assets Less Liabilities — 0.4%

      86,814  
   

 

 

 

Net Assets — 100.0%

    $  20,343,281  
   

 

 

 

 

(a) 

All or a portion of this security is on loan.

(b) 

Non-income producing security.

(c) 

Affiliate of the Fund.

(d) 

Annualized 7-day yield as of period end.

(e) 

All or a portion of this security was purchased with the cash collateral from loaned securities.

 

 

S C H E D U L EO F  I N V E S T M E N T S

  19


Schedule of Investments  (continued)

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI Belgium ETF

 

Affiliates

Investments in issuers considered to be affiliate(s) of the Fund during the year ended August 31, 2023 for purposes of Section 2(a)(3) of the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended, were as follows:

 

 

 
Affiliated Issuer  

Value at

08/31/22

   

Purchases

at Cost

   

Proceeds

from Sale

   

Net Realized

Gain (Loss)

   

Change in

Unrealized

Appreciation

(Depreciation)

   

Value at

08/31/23

   

Shares

Held at

08/31/23

    Income    

Capital

Gain

Distributions

from

Underlying

Funds

 

 

 

BlackRock Cash Funds: Institutional, SL Agency Shares

  $ 26,013       $111,295 (a)    $     $ (1   $ (16   $ 137,291       137,250     $ 2,722 (b)    $  

BlackRock Cash Funds: Treasury, SL Agency Shares

          10,000 (a)                         10,000       10,000       317        
       

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

     

 

 

   

 

 

 
        $ (1   $ (16   $ 147,291       $ 3,039     $  
       

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

     

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

  (a) 

Represents net amount purchased (sold).

 
  (b) 

All or a portion represents securities lending income earned from the reinvestment of cash collateral from loaned securities, net of fees and collateral investment expenses, and other payments to and from borrowers of securities.

 

Derivative Financial Instruments Outstanding as of Period End

Futures Contracts

 

 

 
Description  

Number of

Contracts

   

Expiration

Date

   

Notional

Amount

(000)

   

Value/

Unrealized

Appreciation

(Depreciation)

 

 

 

Long Contracts

       

Euro STOXX 50 Index

    4       09/15/23     $ 187     $ (970
       

 

 

 

Derivative Financial Instruments Categorized by Risk Exposure

As of period end, the fair values of derivative financial instruments located in the Statements of Assets and Liabilities were as follows:

 

 

 
   

Commodity

Contracts

   

Credit

Contracts

   

Equity

Contracts

   

Foreign

Currency

Exchange

Contracts

   

Interest

Rate

Contracts

   

Other

Contracts

    Total
 

 

 

Liabilities — Derivative Financial Instruments

             

Futures contracts

             

Unrealized depreciation on futures contracts(a)

  $     $     $ 970     $     $     $     $ 970  
 

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

  (a) 

Net cumulative unrealized appreciation (depreciation) on futures contracts are reported in the Schedule of Investments. In the Statements of Assets and Liabilities, only current day’s variation margin is reported in receivables or payables and the net cumulative unrealized appreciation (depreciation) is included in accumulated earnings (loss).

 

For the period ended August 31, 2023, the effect of derivative financial instruments in the Statements of Operations was as follows:

 

 

 
   

Commodity

Contracts

   

Credit

Contracts

   

Equity

Contracts

   

Foreign

Currency

Exchange

Contracts

   

Interest

Rate

Contracts

   

Other

Contracts

    Total  

 

 

Net Realized Gain (Loss) from

             

Futures contracts

  $     $     $ 51,924     $     $     $     $ 51,924  
 

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Net Change in Unrealized Appreciation (Depreciation) on

             

Futures contracts

  $     $     $ (5,765   $     $     $     $ (5,765
 

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

   

 

 

 

Average Quarterly Balances of Outstanding Derivative Financial Instruments

 

 

 

Futures contracts:

 

Average notional value of contracts — long

  $ 222,910    

 

 

For more information about the Fund’s investment risks regarding derivative financial instruments, refer to the Notes to Financial Statements.

 

 

20  

2 0 2 3 I S H A R E S  A N N U A L  R E P O R TT O  S H A R E H O L D E R S


Schedule of Investments (continued)

August 31, 2023

   iShares® MSCI Belgium ETF

 

Fair Value Hierarchy as of Period End

Various inputs are used in determining the fair value of financial instruments. For a description of the input levels and information about the Fund’s policy regarding valuation of financial instruments, refer to the Notes to Financial Statements.

The following table summarizes the Fund’s financial instruments categorized in the fair value hierarchy. The breakdown of the Fund’s financial instruments into major categories is disclosed in the Schedule of Investments above.

 

 

 
     Level 1      Level 2      Level 3     Total  

 

 

Assets

          

Investments

          

Long-Term Investments

          

Common Stocks

   $ 457,468      $ 19,651,708      $     $ 20,109,176  

Short-Term Securities

          

Money Market Funds

     147,291                     147,291  
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

 
   $  604,759      $ 19,651,708      $     $ 20,256,467  
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

 

Derivative Financial Instruments(a)

          

Liabilities

          

Equity Contracts

   $      $ (970    $     —     $ (970
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

  (a) 

Derivative financial instruments are futures contracts. Futures contracts are valued at the unrealized appreciation (depreciation) on the instrument.

 

See notes to financial statements.

 

 

S C H E D U L EO F  I N V E S T M E N T S

  21


Schedule of Investments 

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI France ETF

(Percentages shown are based on Net Assets)

 

Security   Shares     Value  

Common Stocks

 

Aerospace & Defense — 8.6%  

Airbus SE

    297,547     $ 43,533,212  

Dassault Aviation SA

    10,355       2,033,308  

Safran SA

    171,567       27,496,214  

Thales SA

    52,756       7,693,378  
   

 

 

 
      80,756,112  
Automobile Components — 1.4%  

Cie. Generale des Etablissements Michelin SCA

    340,520       10,653,498  

Valeo

    104,322       2,027,841  
   

 

 

 
      12,681,339  
Automobiles — 0.4%            

Renault SA

    96,123       3,878,491  
   

 

 

 
Banks — 5.5%            

BNP Paribas SA

    526,624       34,055,533  

Credit Agricole SA

    607,526       7,658,034  

Societe Generale SA

    365,104       10,343,821  
   

 

 

 
      52,057,388  
Beverages — 2.3%            

Pernod Ricard SA

    102,856       20,185,865  

Remy Cointreau SA

    11,399       1,763,345  
   

 

 

 
      21,949,210  
Building Products — 1.6%            

Cie. de Saint-Gobain

    232,176        15,103,544  
   

 

 

 
Capital Markets — 0.5%            

Amundi SA(a)

    30,306       1,803,950  

Euronext NV(a)

    43,179       3,117,120  
   

 

 

 
      4,921,070  
Chemicals — 5.4%            

Air Liquide SA

    262,887       47,497,418  

Arkema SA

    30,134       3,148,974  
   

 

 

 
      50,646,392  
Construction & Engineering — 3.9%  

Bouygues SA

    94,604       3,266,670  

Eiffage SA

    36,752       3,632,313  

Vinci SA

     266,764       29,714,324  
   

 

 

 
      36,613,307  
Consumer Staples Distribution & Retail — 0.6%  

Carrefour SA

    299,906       5,732,320  
   

 

 

 
Diversified Telecommunication Services — 1.1%  

Orange SA

    934,628       10,492,750  
   

 

 

 
Electrical Equipment — 6.4%  

Legrand SA

    133,926       13,194,308  

Schneider Electric SE

    273,152       46,820,516  
   

 

 

 
      60,014,824  
Entertainment — 0.2%            

Bollore SE

    370,326       2,190,597  
   

 

 

 
Financial Services — 1.5%            

Edenred

    125,278       7,983,128  

Eurazeo SE

    21,756       1,281,908  

Wendel SE

    13,203       1,206,381  

Worldline SA/France(a)(b)

    120,582       3,924,485  
   

 

 

 
      14,395,902  
Food Products — 2.0%            

Danone SA

    323,190       18,839,644  
   

 

 

 
Security   Shares     Value  
Health Care Equipment & Supplies — 3.2%  

BioMerieux

    20,604     $ 2,127,976  

EssilorLuxottica SA

    147,990       27,815,733  
   

 

 

 
      29,943,709  
Hotels, Restaurants & Leisure — 1.1%  

Accor SA

    93,215       3,333,675  

La Francaise des Jeux SAEM(a)

    53,054       1,918,412  

Sodexo SA

    44,484       4,772,260  
   

 

 

 
      10,024,347  
Household Durables — 0.2%            

SEB SA

    12,458       1,367,459  
   

 

 

 
Insurance — 3.0%            

AXA SA

    921,159       27,676,121  
   

 

 

 
IT Services — 1.7%            

Capgemini SE

    82,771       15,446,833  
   

 

 

 
Life Sciences Tools & Services — 0.9%  

Eurofins Scientific SE

    67,338       4,144,831  

Sartorius Stedim Biotech

    13,881       3,936,807  
   

 

 

 
      8,081,638  
Machinery — 0.4%            

Alstom SA

    143,751       3,964,138  
   

 

 

 
Media — 1.3%            

Publicis Groupe SA

    114,884       8,964,165  

Vivendi SE

    339,888       3,095,652  
   

 

 

 
       12,059,817  
Metals & Mining — 0.7%            

ArcelorMittal SA

    256,834       6,822,691  
   

 

 

 
Multi-Utilities — 2.7%            

Engie SA

    916,771       14,763,902  

Veolia Environnement SA

    341,124       10,642,024  
   

 

 

 
      25,405,926  
Office REITs — 0.4%            

Covivio

    25,349       1,235,990  

Gecina SA

    23,017       2,462,260  
   

 

 

 
      3,698,250  
Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels — 7.5%  

TotalEnergies SE

     1,127,976       70,756,686  
   

 

 

 
Personal Care Products — 5.7%  

L’Oreal SA

    121,059       53,173,001  
   

 

 

 
Pharmaceuticals — 6.7%            

Ipsen SA

    18,956       2,455,642  

Sanofi

    570,275       60,736,533  
   

 

 

 
      63,192,175  
Professional Services — 0.9%            

Bureau Veritas SA

    148,334       3,973,589  

Teleperformance

    29,754       4,111,158  
   

 

 

 
      8,084,747  
Retail REITs — 0.6%            

Klepierre SA

    107,990       2,852,404  

Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield, New(b)

    59,487       3,175,103  
   

 

 

 
      6,027,507  
Semiconductors & Semiconductor Equipment — 1.7%  

STMicroelectronics NV

    343,055       16,190,381  
   

 

 

 

 

 

22  

2 0 2 3 I S H A R E S  A N N U A L  R E P O R TT O  S H A R E H O L D E R S


Schedule of Investments (continued)

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI France ETF

(Percentages shown are based on Net Assets)

 

Security   Shares     Value  
Software — 1.4%            

Dassault Systemes SE

    336,289     $ 13,327,303  
   

 

 

 
Textiles, Apparel & Luxury Goods — 18.1%  

Hermes International

    15,897       32,695,131  

Kering SA

    37,365       19,980,191  

LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE

     138,554       117,169,210  
   

 

 

 
       169,844,532  
Transportation Infrastructure — 0.5%  

Aeroports de Paris

    14,982       1,971,746  

Getlink SE

    179,098       2,997,633  
   

 

 

 
      4,969,379  
   

 

 

 

Total Long-Term Investments — 100.1%
(Cost: $940,552,183)

      940,329,530  
   

 

 

 

Short-Term Securities

 

 
Money Market Funds — 0.8%            

BlackRock Cash Funds: Institutional,
SL Agency Shares, 5.52%(c)(d)

    42,522       42,535  
Security   Shares     Value  

 

 
Money Market Funds (continued)        

BlackRock Cash Funds: Treasury,
SL Agency Shares, 5.31%(c)(d)

    7,570,000     $ 7,570,000  
   

 

 

 

Total Short-Term Securities — 0.8%
(Cost: $7,612,531)

 

    7,612,535  
   

 

 

 

Total Investments — 100.9%
(Cost: $948,164,714)

 

    947,942,065  

Liabilities in Excess of Other Assets — (0.9)%

 

    (8,589,125
   

 

 

 

Net Assets — 100.0%

    $  939,352,940  
   

 

 

 

 

(a) 

Security exempt from registration pursuant to Rule 144A under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended. These securities may be resold in transactions exempt from registration to qualified institutional investors.

(b) 

Non-income producing security.

(c) 

Affiliate of the Fund.

(d) 

Annualized 7-day yield as of period end.

 

Affiliates

Investments in issuers considered to be affiliate(s) of the Fund during the year ended August 31, 2023 for purposes of Section 2(a)(3) of the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended, were as follows:

 

 

 
Affiliated Issuer   

Value at

08/31/22

    

Purchases

at Cost

    

Proceeds

from Sale

    

Net Realized

Gain (Loss)

    

Change in

Unrealized

Appreciation

(Depreciation)

    

Value at

08/31/23

    

Shares

Held at

08/31/23

     Income     

Capital

Gain

Distributions

from

Underlying

Funds

 

 

 

BlackRock Cash Funds: Institutional,
SL Agency Shares

   $ 2,434,800      $      $ (2,391,418 )(a)     $ 292      $ (1,139    $ 42,535        42,522      $ 40,784 (b)     $  

BlackRock Cash Funds: Treasury,
SL Agency Shares

     7,730,000               (160,000 )(a)                     7,570,000        7,570,000        353,722        9  
           

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

       

 

 

    

 

 

 
            $ 292      $ (1,139    $ 7,612,535         $ 394,506      $   9  
           

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

       

 

 

    

 

 

 

 

  (a) 

Represents net amount purchased (sold).

 
  (b) 

All or a portion represents securities lending income earned from the reinvestment of cash collateral from loaned securities, net of fees and collateral investment expenses, and other payments to and from borrowers of securities.

 

Derivative Financial Instruments Categorized by Risk Exposure

For the period ended August 31, 2023, the effect of derivative financial instruments in the Statements of Operations was as follows:

 

 

 
    

Commodity

Contracts

    

Credit

Contracts

    

Equity

Contracts

    

Foreign

Currency

Exchange

Contracts

    

Interest

Rate

Contracts

    

Other

Contracts

     Total  

 

 

Net Realized Gain (Loss) from

                    

Futures contracts

   $      $      $ (26,008    $      $      $      $ (26,008
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

 

Net Change in Unrealized Appreciation (Depreciation) on

                    

Futures contracts

   $      $      $ 28,983      $      $      $      $ 28,983  
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

 

Average Quarterly Balances of Outstanding Derivative Financial Instruments

 

   

Futures contracts:

  

Average notional value of contracts — long

   $ 1,624,923  

 

 

S C H E D U L EO F  I N V E S T M E N T S

  23


Schedule of Investments (continued)

August 31, 2023

   iShares® MSCI France ETF

 

Derivative Financial Instruments Categorized by Risk Exposure (continued)

For more information about the Fund’s investment risks regarding derivative financial instruments, refer to the Notes to Financial Statements.

Fair Value Hierarchy as of Period End

Various inputs are used in determining the fair value of financial instruments. For a description of the input levels and information about the Fund’s policy regarding valuation of financial instruments, refer to the Notes to Financial Statements.

The following table summarizes the Fund’s financial instruments categorized in the fair value hierarchy. The breakdown of the Fund’s financial instruments into major categories is disclosed in the Schedule of Investments above.

 

 

 
    Level 1      Level 2      Level 3     Total  

 

 

Assets

         

Investments

         

Long-Term Investments

         

Common Stocks

  $      $ 940,329,530      $     $ 940,329,530  

Short-Term Securities

         

Money Market Funds

    7,612,535                     7,612,535  
 

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

 
  $  7,612,535      $ 940,329,530      $     —     $ 947,942,065  
 

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

   

 

 

 

See notes to financial statements.

 

 

24  

2 0 2 3 I S H A R E S  A N N U A L  R E P O R TT O  S H A R E H O L D E R S


Schedule of Investments 

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI Netherlands ETF

(Percentages shown are based on Net Assets)

 

Security   Shares     Value  

Common Stocks

 

Air Freight & Logistics — 1.2%  

InPost SA(a)

    163,505     $ 1,921,383  

PostNL NV

    426,907       994,358  
   

 

 

 
      2,915,741  
Banks — 9.0%            

ABN AMRO Bank NV, CVA(b)

    197,248       2,901,499  

ING Groep NV

    1,373,816       19,465,613  
   

 

 

 
      22,367,112  
Beverages — 7.6%            

Coca-Cola Europacific Partners PLC

    82,073       5,261,700  

Heineken Holding NV

    47,216       3,778,366  

Heineken NV

    101,091       9,827,100  
   

 

 

 
      18,867,166  
Biotechnology — 0.4%            

Pharming Group NV(a)

    731,981       929,943  
   

 

 

 

Broadline Retail — 7.4%

   

Prosus NV

    267,817       18,472,514  
   

 

 

 
Capital Markets — 1.2%            

Allfunds Group PLC

    194,452       1,150,512  

Flow Trades Ltd., NVS

    38,467       779,175  

Van Lanschot Kempen NV

    36,302       1,074,980  
   

 

 

 
      3,004,667  
Chemicals — 5.7%            

Akzo Nobel NV

    71,381       5,794,959  

Corbion NV

    39,946       955,370  

DSM-Firmenich AG

    66,224       6,125,783  

OCI NV

    57,427       1,452,401  
   

 

 

 
      14,328,513  
Construction & Engineering — 0.8%  

Fugro NV(a)

    81,075       1,366,184  

Koninklijke BAM Groep NV

    360,104       767,048  
   

 

 

 
      2,133,232  
Consumer Staples Distribution & Retail — 4.6%  

Koninklijke Ahold Delhaize NV

    333,416       10,906,039  

Sligro Food Group NV

    29,767       572,625  
   

 

 

 
       11,478,664  
Distributors — 0.1%            

B&S Group Sarl(b)

    40,351       162,548  
   

 

 

 
Diversified Telecommunication Services — 1.9%  

Koninklijke KPN NV

     1,330,584       4,656,238  
   

 

 

 
Electrical Equipment — 1.6%  

Alfen Beheer BV(a)(b)(c)

    14,683       848,625  

Signify NV(b)

    63,284       1,788,869  

TKH Group NV

    29,280       1,347,909  
   

 

 

 
      3,985,403  
Energy Equipment & Services — 0.5%  

SBM Offshore NV

    87,434       1,266,691  
   

 

 

 

Entertainment — 3.0%

   

Universal Music Group NV

    304,235       7,542,954  
   

 

 

 
Financial Services — 4.2%  

Adyen NV(a)(b)

    7,702       6,431,334  

EXOR NV

    44,676       3,953,692  
   

 

 

 
      10,385,026  
Security   Shares     Value  
Food Products — 0.7%  

JDE Peet’s NV

    60,906     $ 1,695,996  
   

 

 

 
Health Care Equipment & Supplies — 3.2%  

Koninklijke Philips NV(a)(c)

    360,623       8,103,769  
   

 

 

 
Hotels, Restaurants & Leisure — 1.1%  

Basic-Fit NV(a)(b)(c)

    40,773       1,242,498  

Just Eat Takeaway.com NV(a)(b)

    100,282       1,408,556  
   

 

 

 
          2,651,054  
Insurance — 4.3%            

Aegon NV

    731,712       3,750,019  

ASR Nederland NV

    63,176       2,762,344  

NN Group NV

     108,978       4,195,162  
   

 

 

 
          10,707,525  
IT Services — 0.3%            

Ordina NV

    110,346       685,882  
   

 

 

 
Machinery — 0.9%            

Aalberts NV

    49,015       2,036,068  

Ebusco Holding NV(a)(c)

    19,545       163,133  
   

 

 

 
          2,199,201  
Metals & Mining — 0.4%            

AMG Advanced Metallurgical Group NV

    29,647       1,005,353  
   

 

 

 
Office REITs — 0.2%            

NSI NV

    27,257       552,700  
   

 

 

 
Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels — 0.7%  

Koninklijke Vopak NV

    48,908       1,763,318  
   

 

 

 
Professional Services — 6.7%  

Arcadis NV

    41,022       1,920,074  

Brunel International NV

    27,712       373,572  

Randstad NV

    52,239       3,065,650  

Wolters Kluwer NV

    93,488        11,264,398  
   

 

 

 
          16,623,694  
Retail REITs — 0.8%            

Eurocommercial Properties NV

    40,678       977,339  

Vastned Retail NV

    15,564       333,518  

Wereldhave NV

    43,799       762,322  
   

 

 

 
          2,073,179  
Semiconductors & Semiconductor Equipment — 27.6%  

ASM International NV

    18,251       8,785,471  

ASML Holding NV

    85,091       55,949,723  

BE Semiconductor Industries NV

    35,719       4,100,005  
   

 

 

 
          68,835,199  
Software — 0.3%            

TomTom NV(a)

    95,711       759,547  
   

 

 

 
Specialty Retail — 0.1%            

Fastned BV(a)(c)

    9,079       292,391  
   

 

 

 
Trading Companies & Distributors — 3.1%  

AerCap Holdings NV(a)

    71,894       4,422,919  

IMCD NV

    23,849       3,284,775  
   

 

 

 
          7,707,694  
   

 

 

 

Total Long-Term Investments — 99.6%
(Cost: $303,868,025)

 

    248,152,914  
   

 

 

 

 

 

S C H E D U L EO F  I N V E S T M E N T S

  25


Schedule of Investments (continued)

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI Netherlands ETF

(Percentages shown are based on Net Assets)

 

Security   Shares     Value  

 

 

Short-Term Securities

   
Money Market Funds — 4.5%            

BlackRock Cash Funds: Institutional,
SL Agency Shares, 5.52%(d)(e)(f)

    11,020,165     $ 11,023,471  

BlackRock Cash Funds: Treasury,
SL Agency Shares, 5.31%(d)(e)

    160,000       160,000  
   

 

 

 

Total Short-Term Securities — 4.5%
(Cost: $11,183,471)

      11,183,471  
   

 

 

 

Total Investments — 104.1%
(Cost: $315,051,496)

      259,336,385  

Liabilities in Excess of Other Assets — (4.1)%

 

    (10,219,731
   

 

 

 

Net Assets — 100.0%

    $  249,116,654  
   

 

 

 

 

(a) 

Non-income producing security.

(b) 

Security exempt from registration pursuant to Rule 144A under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended. These securities may be resold in transactions exempt from registration to qualified institutional investors.

(c) 

All or a portion of this security is on loan.

(d) 

Affiliate of the Fund.

(e) 

Annualized 7-day yield as of period end.

(f) 

All or a portion of this security was purchased with the cash collateral from loaned securities.

 

Affiliates

Investments in issuers considered to be affiliate(s) of the Fund during the year ended August 31, 2023 for purposes of Section 2(a)(3) of the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended, were as follows:

 

 

 
Affiliated Issuer   

Value at

08/31/22

    

Purchases

at Cost

    

Proceeds

from Sale

    

Net Realized

Gain (Loss)

    

Change in

Unrealized

Appreciation

(Depreciation)

    

Value at

08/31/23

    

Shares

Held at

08/31/23

     Income     

Capital

Gain

Distributions

from

Underlying

Funds

 

 

 

BlackRock Cash Funds: Institutional, SL Agency Shares

   $ 3,283,583      $ 7,725,791 (a)     $      $ 15,826      $ (1,729    $ 11,023,471        11,020,165      $ 230,811 (b)     $  

BlackRock Cash Funds: Treasury, SL Agency Shares

     20,000        140,000 (a)                            160,000        160,000        8,201         
           

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

       

 

 

    

 

 

 
            $ 15,826      $ (1,729    $ 11,183,471         $ 239,012      $  
           

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

       

 

 

    

 

 

 

 

  (a) 

Represents net amount purchased (sold).

 
  (b) 

All or a portion represents securities lending income earned from the reinvestment of cash collateral from loaned securities, net of fees and collateral investment expenses, and other payments to and from borrowers of securities.

 

Derivative Financial Instruments Outstanding as of Period End

Futures Contracts

 

 

 
Description   

Number of

Contracts

    

Expiration

Date

    

Notional

Amount

(000)

    

Value/

Unrealized

Appreciation

(Depreciation)

 

 

 

Long Contracts

           

Euro STOXX 50 Index

     19        09/15/23      $ 887      $ (5,532
           

 

 

 

 

 

26  

2 0 2 3 I S H A R E S  A N N U A L  R E P O R TT O  S H A R E H O L D E R S


Schedule of Investments  (continued)

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI Netherlands ETF

 

Futures Contracts (continued)

As of period end, the fair values of derivative financial instruments located in the Statements of Assets and Liabilities were as follows:

 

 

 
     Commodity
Contracts
     Credit
Contracts
     Equity
Contracts
     Foreign
Currency
Exchange
Contracts
     Interest
Rate
Contracts
     Other
Contracts
     Total  

 

 

Liabilities — Derivative Financial Instruments

                    

Futures contracts

                    

Unrealized depreciation on futures contracts(a)

   $      $      $ 5,532      $      $      $      $ 5,532  
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

 

 

  (a) 

Net cumulative unrealized appreciation (depreciation) on futures contracts are reported in the Schedule of Investments. In the Statements of Assets and Liabilities, only current day’s variation margin is reported in receivables or payables and the net cumulative unrealized appreciation (depreciation) is included in accumulated earnings (loss).

 

For the period ended August 31, 2023, the effect of derivative financial instruments in the Statements of Operations was as follows:

 

 

 
    

Commodity

Contracts

    

Credit

Contracts

    

Equity

Contracts

    

Foreign

Currency

Exchange

Contracts

    

Interest

Rate

Contracts

    

Other

Contracts

     Total  

 

 

Net Realized Gain (Loss) from

                    

Futures contracts

   $      $      $ 38,924      $      $      $      $ 38,924  
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

 

Net Change in Unrealized Appreciation (Depreciation) on

                    

Futures contracts

   $      $      $ 83,756      $      $      $      $ 83,756  
  

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

    

 

 

 

Average Quarterly Balances of Outstanding Derivative Financial Instruments

 

   

Futures contracts:

  

Average notional value of contracts — long

   $ 710,979  

For more information about the Fund’s investment risks regarding derivative financial instruments, refer to the Notes to Financial Statements.

Fair Value Hierarchy as of Period End

Various inputs are used in determining the fair value of financial instruments. For a description of the input levels and information about the Fund’s policy regarding valuation of financial instruments, refer to the Notes to Financial Statements.

The following table summarizes the Fund’s financial instruments categorized in the fair value hierarchy. The breakdown of the Fund’s financial instruments into major categories is disclosed in the Schedule of Investments above.

 

 

 
     Level 1        Level 2        Level 3        Total  

 

 

Assets

                 

Investments

                 

Long-Term Investments

                 

Common Stocks

   $ 13,167,429        $ 234,985,485        $        $ 248,152,914  

Short-Term Securities

                 

Money Market Funds

     11,183,471                            11,183,471  
  

 

 

      

 

 

      

 

 

      

 

 

 
   $  24,350,900        $ 234,985,485        $        $ 259,336,385  
  

 

 

      

 

 

      

 

 

      

 

 

 

Derivative Financial Instruments(a)

                 

Liabilities

                 

Equity Contracts

   $        $ (5,532      $     —        $ (5,532
  

 

 

      

 

 

      

 

 

      

 

 

 

 

  (a) 

Derivative financial instruments are futures contracts. Futures contracts are valued at the unrealized appreciation (depreciation) on the instrument.

 

See notes to financial statements.

 

 

S C H E D U L EO F  I N V E S T M E N T S

  27


Schedule of Investments 

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI Sweden ETF

(Percentages shown are based on Net Assets)

 

Security   Shares     Value  

Common Stocks

 

Aerospace & Defense — 0.9%

 

Saab AB, Class B

    52,494     $ 2,767,176  
   

 

 

 

Automobiles — 0.5%

   

Volvo Car AB, Class B(a)(b)

    390,641       1,483,123  
   

 

 

 

Banks — 16.8%

   

Nordea Bank Abp

    2,111,793       23,135,230  

Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken AB, Class A

    1,040,263       12,060,373  

Svenska Handelsbanken AB, Class A

    956,163       7,978,277  

Swedbank AB, Class A

    556,559       9,849,823  
   

 

 

 
          53,023,703  
Biotechnology — 0.7%            

Swedish Orphan Biovitrum AB(a)(b)

    113,140       2,182,293  
   

 

 

 

Building Products — 7.1%

   

Assa Abloy AB, Class B

    657,049       14,787,500  

Nibe Industrier AB, Class B

    993,472       7,436,209  
   

 

 

 
          22,223,709  
Capital Markets — 1.5%            

EQT AB

    233,123       4,686,075  
   

 

 

 

Commercial Services & Supplies — 0.8%

 

Securitas AB, Class B

    322,402       2,623,108  
   

 

 

 

Communications Equipment — 3.1%

 

Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson, Class B

    1,919,610       9,851,410  
   

 

 

 

Construction & Engineering — 1.0%

 

Skanska AB, Class B

    223,035       3,264,895  
   

 

 

 

Diversified Telecommunication Services — 1.0%

 

Telia Co. AB

    1,546,599       3,122,278  
   

 

 

 

Electronic Equipment, Instruments & Components — 3.9%

 

Hexagon AB, Class B

    1,361,026       12,151,453  
   

 

 

 

Financial Services — 9.1%

   

Industrivarden AB, Class A

    85,332       2,222,815  

Industrivarden AB, Class C(b)

    101,217       2,631,721  

Investor AB, Class B

     1,134,639       21,839,332  

L E Lundbergforetagen AB, Class B

    49,821       2,024,799  
   

 

 

 
           28,718,667  
Health Care Equipment & Supplies — 0.8%  

Getinge AB, Class B

    149,947       2,599,681  
   

 

 

 

Hotels, Restaurants & Leisure — 4.1%

 

Evolution AB(c)

    120,137       12,993,649  
   

 

 

 

Household Products — 3.0%

 

Essity AB, Class B

    399,307       9,322,293  
   

 

 

 

Industrial Conglomerates — 1.4%

 

Investment AB Latour, Class B

    97,060       1,763,644  

Lifco AB, Class B

    152,814       2,794,429  
   

 

 

 
          4,558,073  
Machinery — 31.5%            

Alfa Laval AB

    189,667       6,659,216  

Atlas Copco AB, Class A

    1,760,827       23,280,266  

Atlas Copco AB, Class B

    1,023,221       11,779,974  

Epiroc AB, Class A

    432,011       8,288,297  

Epiroc AB, Class B

    255,644       4,184,503  
Security   Shares     Value  

 

 
Machinery (continued)            

Husqvarna AB, Class B

    229,229     $ 1,973,561  

Indutrade AB

    179,122       3,437,642  

Sandvik AB

    698,958       13,218,559  

SKF AB, Class B

    223,392       3,617,021  

Volvo AB, Class A

    131,269       2,684,950  

Volvo AB, Class B

    989,241       19,936,783  
   

 

 

 
      99,060,772  
Metals & Mining — 1.5%            

Boliden AB

    179,298       4,767,623  
   

 

 

 
Paper & Forest Products — 2.4%  

Holmen AB, Class B

    61,498       2,331,026  

Svenska Cellulosa AB SCA, Class B

    397,175       5,287,182  
   

 

 

 
      7,618,208  
Real Estate Management & Development — 1.5%  

Fastighets AB Balder, Class B(a)

    427,397       2,042,796  

Sagax AB, Class B

    129,303       2,689,151  
   

 

 

 
      4,731,947  
Specialty Retail — 2.1%            

H & M Hennes & Mauritz AB, Class B

    423,401       6,464,483  
   

 

 

 
Trading Companies & Distributors — 0.9%  

Beijer Ref AB, Class B

    252,321       2,892,152  
   

 

 

 
Wireless Telecommunication Services — 0.8%  

Tele2 AB, Class B

    350,212       2,474,176  
   

 

 

 

Total Common Stocks — 96.4%
(Cost: $393,423,498)

 

    303,580,947  
   

 

 

 

Rights

   
Biotechnology — 0.1%            

Swedish Orphan Biovitrum AB (Expires 09/21/23, Strike Price SEK 142.00)(a)(b)

    106,039       95,787  
   

 

 

 

Total Rights — 0.1%
(Cost: $0)

      95,787  
   

 

 

 

Total Long-Term Investments — 96.5%
(Cost: $393,423,498)

 

    303,676,734  
   

 

 

 

Short-Term Securities

 

 
Money Market Funds — 3.6%            

BlackRock Cash Funds: Institutional,
SL Agency Shares, 5.52%(d)(e)(f)

    5,096,685       5,098,214  

BlackRock Cash Funds: Treasury,
SL Agency Shares, 5.31%(d)(e)

     6,320,000       6,320,000  
   

 

 

 

Total Short-Term Securities — 3.6%
(Cost: $11,418,199)

 

    11,418,214  
   

 

 

 

Total Investments — 100.1%
(Cost: $404,841,697)

 

    315,094,948  

Liabilities in Excess of Other Assets — (0.1)%

 

    (205,694
   

 

 

 

Net Assets — 100.0%

    $  314,889,254  
   

 

 

 

 

(a) 

Non-income producing security.

(b) 

All or a portion of this security is on loan.

(c) 

Security exempt from registration pursuant to Rule 144A under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended. These securities may be resold in transactions exempt from registration to qualified institutional investors.

 

 

28  

2 0 2 3 I S H A R E S  A N N U A L  R E P O R TT O  S H A R E H O L D E R S


Schedule of Investments  (continued)

August 31, 2023

  

iShares® MSCI Sweden ETF

 

(d) 

Affiliate of the Fund.

(e) 

Annualized 7-day yield as of period end.

(f) 

All or a portion of this security was purchased with the cash collateral from loaned securities.

 

Affiliates

Investments in issuers considered to be affiliate(s) of the Fund during the year ended August 31, 2023 for purposes of Section 2(a)(3) of the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended, were as follows:

 

 

 
Affiliated Issuer   

Value at

08/31/22

    

Purchases

at Cost

    

Proceeds

from Sale

    

Net Realized

Gain (Loss)

    

Change in

Unrealized

Appreciation

(Depreciation)

    

Value at

08/31/23

    

Shares

Held at

08/31/23

     Income