2021-05-07JohnHancockCorporateBondETF_StatutoryProspectus_FYE430_09-01-21

 

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Prospectus
John Hancock
Multifactor Industrials ETF
ETF
September 1, 2021
NYSE Arca:
JHMI
The Securities and Exchange Commission has not approved or disapproved these securities or passed upon the adequacy of this prospectus. Any representation to the contrary is a criminal offense.
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Table of contents
Fund summary
The summary section is a concise look at the investment objective, fees and expenses, principal investment strategies, principal risks, past performance, and investment management.
1
Fund details
More about topics covered in the summary section, including descriptions of the investment strategies and various risk factors that investors should understand before investing.
6
6
6
Shareholder information
Details regarding buying and selling shares, as well as information about distributions, taxation, and other matters relating to an investment in the fund.
Index provider
Information on who constructs the index that the fund seeks to replicate.
Other information
Additional information regarding the market price and net asset value of the fund, as well as information relating to the continuous offering of the fund’s shares.
For more information See back cover


 

Fund summary
 
John Hancock Multifactor Industrials ETF
Investment objective
To seek to provide investment results that closely correspond, before fees and expenses, to the performance of the John Hancock Dimensional Industrials Index (the Index).
Fees and expenses
This table describes the fees and expenses you may pay if you buy, hold, and sell shares of the fund. You may pay other fees, such as brokerage commissions and other fees to financial intermediaries, which are not reflected in the tables and examples below.
Annual fund operating expenses (%) (expenses that you pay each year as a percentage of the value of your investment)
Management fee
0.38
Other expenses
0.35
Total annual fund operating expenses
0.73
Contractual expense reimbursement1
-0.33
Total annual fund operating expenses after expense reimbursements
0.40
1 The advisor contractually agrees to reduce its management fee or, if necessary, make payment to the fund in an amount equal to the amount by which expenses of the fund exceed 0.40% of average daily net assets. Expenses means all the expenses of the fund, excluding (a) taxes, (b) brokerage commissions, (c) interest expense, (d) litigation and indemnification expenses and other extraordinary expenses not incurred in the ordinary course of the fund’s business, (e) borrowing costs, (f) prime brokerage fees, (g) acquired fund fees and expenses paid indirectly, and (h) short dividend expense. This agreement expires on August 31, 2022, unless renewed by mutual agreement of the fund and the advisor based upon a determination that this is appropriate under the circumstances at that time. The advisor also contractually agrees to waive a portion of its management fee and/or reimburse expenses for the fund and certain other John Hancock funds according to an asset level breakpoint schedule that is based on the aggregate net assets of all the funds participating in the waiver or reimbursement. This waiver is allocated proportionally among the participating funds. During its most recent fiscal year, the fund’s reimbursement amounted to 0.01% of the fund’s average daily net assets. This agreement expires on July 31, 2023, unless renewed by mutual agreement of the fund and the advisor based upon a determination that this is appropriate under the circumstances at that time.
Expense example
This example is intended to help you compare the cost of investing in the fund with the cost of investing in other funds. Please see below a hypothetical example showing the expenses of a $10,000 investment in the fund for the time periods indicated assuming you redeem all of your shares at the end of those periods. The example assumes a 5% average annual return and that fund expenses will not change over the periods. The example does not take into account brokerage commissions that you may pay on your purchases and sales of shares of the fund. Although your actual costs may be higher or lower, based on these assumptions, your costs would be:
Expenses ($)
1 year
41
3 years
200
5 years
373
10 years
875
Portfolio turnover
The fund pays transaction costs, such as commissions, when it buys and sells securities (or “turns over” its portfolio). A higher portfolio turnover rate may indicate higher transaction costs and may result in higher taxes when fund shares are held in a taxable account. These costs, which are not reflected in annual fund operating expenses or in the example, affect the fund’s performance. During its most recent fiscal year, the fund’s portfolio turnover rate was 13% of the average value of its portfolio.
Principal investment strategies
The fund normally invests at least 80% of its net assets (plus any borrowings for investment purposes) in securities that compose the fund’s Index. The Index is developed and maintained by Dimensional Fund Advisors LP and is designed to comprise securities in the industrials sector within the U.S. Universe whose market capitalizations are larger than that of the 1001st largest U.S. company at the time of reconstitution. Stocks that compose the Index include those that may be considered medium or smaller capitalization company stocks. The selection and weighting of securities in the Index involves a rules-based process that may sometimes be referred to as multifactor investing, factor-based investing, strategic beta, or smart beta. Securities are classified according to their market capitalization, relative price, and profitability. Weights for individual securities are then determined by adjusting their free-float adjusted market capitalization weight within the universe of eligible securities so that securities with smaller market
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Fund summary 
capitalizations, lower relative price and higher profitability generally receive an increased weight relative to their unadjusted weight, and vice versa. This process can be summarized as follows:

Adjustments for market capitalization: Securities within the eligible universe are assigned into one of three groups based on size, with the intent of increasing the weights of securities with smaller market capitalizations within the eligible universe and decreasing weights of securities with larger market capitalizations within the eligible universe. Securities in the smallest market capitalization group will have their free-float market capitalization increased by an adjustment factor. Securities in the middle group will have their free-float market capitalization increased by a lesser adjustment factor. Securities in the group with the largest market capitalization will receive the lowest adjustment factor of the three groups.

 

Adjustments for relative price and profitability: Securities are assigned to a relative price group and to a profitability group. Relative price adjustment factors are assigned with the intent of increasing the weights of securities with lower relative prices and decreasing the weights of securities with higher relative prices. Similarly, profitability adjustment factors are assigned with the intent of increasing the weights of securities with higher profitability and decreasing the weights of securities with lower profitability.

 

Securities are then weighted after taking into account their free-float, size, relative price and profitability adjustments, subject to a cap of 6% on a single company at the time of reconstitution.
 
The Index is reconstituted and rebalanced on a semiannual basis. The industrials sector is composed of companies involved in areas such as aerospace and defense, construction and engineering, machinery, building products and equipment, road/rail/air/marine transportation and infrastructure, industrial trading and distribution, and related services. The U.S. Universe is defined as a free float-adjusted market-capitalization-weighted portfolio of U.S. operating companies listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), NYSE American LLC, NASDAQ Global Market, or such other securities exchanges deemed appropriate in accordance with the rules-based methodology that is maintained by Dimensional Fund Advisors LP. This means that the market-capitalization of a particular company within the eligible universe of stocks is adjusted to exclude the share capital of a company that is not considered freely available for trading in the public equity markets.
The fund, using an indexing investment approach, attempts to approximate the investment performance of the Index by investing in a portfolio of securities that generally replicates the Index. The fund may concentrate its investments in a particular industry or group of industries to the extent that the Index concentrates in an industry or group of industries.
The fund is non-diversified, which means that it may invest in a smaller number of issuers than a diversified fund and may invest more of its assets in the securities of a single issuer.
Principal risks
An investment in the fund is not a bank deposit and is not insured or guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or any other government agency. Many factors affect performance, and the fund’s shares will fluctuate in price, meaning you could lose money.
During periods of heightened market volatility or reduced liquidity, governments, their agencies, or other regulatory bodies, both within the United States and abroad, may take steps to intervene. These actions, which could include legislative, regulatory, or economic initiatives, might have unforeseeable consequences and could adversely affect the fund’s performance or otherwise constrain the fund’s ability to achieve its investment objective.
The fund’s main risks are listed below in alphabetical order, not in order of importance. Before investing, be sure to read the additional descriptions of these risks beginning on page 6 of the prospectus.
Active trading market risk. Active trading markets for fund shares may not be developed or maintained by market makers or authorized participants. Market makers are not obligated to make a market in the fund’s shares or to submit purchase or redemption orders for creation units.
Authorized participant concentration risk. To the extent that authorized participants are unable or otherwise unavailable to proceed with creation and/or redemption orders and no other authorized participant is able to create or redeem in their place, shares may trade at a discount to net asset value (NAV) and may face delisting.
Economic and market events risk. Events in the U.S. and global financial markets, including actions taken by the U.S. Federal Reserve or foreign central banks to stimulate or stabilize economic growth, may at times result in unusually high market volatility, which could negatively impact performance. Reduced liquidity in credit and fixed-income markets could adversely affect issuers worldwide. Banks and financial services companies could suffer losses if interest rates rise or economic conditions deteriorate.
Equity securities risk. The price of equity securities may decline due to changes in a company’s financial condition or overall market conditions.
ETF trading risk. The market price of shares may include a bid-ask spread (the difference between the prices at which investors are willing to buy and sell shares), which may vary over time and may increase for various reasons, including decreased trading volume or reduced market liquidity.
Index risk. Because the fund is not “actively” managed, its performance could be lower than funds that may actively shift their portfolio assets to take advantage of market opportunities or to lessen the impact of a market decline or a decline in the value of one or more issuers. Errors in the construction or calculation of the Index may occur from time to time. Any such errors may not be identified and corrected for some period of time, which may have an adverse impact on the fund and its shareholders.
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Fund summary 
Industrials sector risk. Companies in the industrials sector may be affected by general economic conditions, commodity production and pricing, supply and demand fluctuations, environmental and other government regulations, geopolitical events, interest rates, insurance costs, technological developments, liabilities arising from governmental or civil actions, labor relations, input controls, and government spending.
Industry or sector investing risk. The performance of a fund that focuses on a single industry or sector of the economy depends in large part on the performance of that industry or sector. As a result, the value of an investment may fluctuate more widely since it is more susceptible to market, economic, political, regulatory, and other conditions and risks affecting that industry or sector than a fund that invests more broadly across industries and sectors.
Large company risk. Larger companies may grow more slowly than smaller companies or be slower to respond to business developments. Large-capitalization securities may underperform the market as a whole.
Non-diversified risk. Adverse events affecting a particular issuer or group of issuers may magnify losses for non-diversified funds, which may invest a large portion of assets in any one issuer or a small number of issuers.
Operational and cybersecurity risk. Cybersecurity breaches may allow an unauthorized party to gain access to fund assets, customer data, or proprietary information, or cause a fund or its service providers to suffer data corruption or lose operational functionality. Similar incidents affecting issuers of a fund’s securities may negatively impact performance. Operational risk may arise from human error, error by third parties, communication errors, or technology failures, among other causes.
Premium/discount risk. The NAV of the fund and the value of your investment may fluctuate. Disruptions to creations and redemptions or the market price of the fund’s holdings, the existence of extreme market volatility or potential lack of an active trading market for shares may result in shares trading at a significant premium or discount to NAV. If a shareholder purchases shares at a time when the market price is at a premium to the NAV or sells shares at a time when the market price is at a discount to the NAV, the shareholder may sustain losses.
Quantitative modeling risk. Quantitative models may not accurately predict future market movements or characteristics, which may negatively impact performance. Models also may perform differently than expected due to implementation problems, technological malfunction, or programming or data inaccuracies, among other possible issues.
Small and mid-sized company risk. Small and mid-sized companies are generally less established and may be more volatile than larger companies. Small and/or mid-capitalization securities may underperform the market as a whole.
Tracking error risk. The fund’s portfolio composition and performance may vary substantially from that of the Index due to factors such as the fees and expenses of the fund, transaction costs, differences in accrual of dividends, delays in the fund’s implementation of changes to the Index, pricing differences in the treatment of corporate actions, or the need to meet new or existing regulatory requirements. Tracking error risk may be heightened in volatile markets or under other unusual market conditions.
Trading issues risk. Trading in shares on NYSE Arca, Inc. (NYSE Arca) may be halted in certain circumstances. There can be no assurance that the requirements of NYSE Arca necessary to maintain the listing of the fund will continue to be met.
Value investment style risk. Value securities, as a category, may underperform other segments of the market or the market as a whole and following a value-oriented investment strategy may cause the fund, at times, to underperform equity funds that employ a different investment style.
Past performance
The following information illustrates the variability of the fund’s returns and provides some indication of the risks of investing in the fund by showing changes in the fund’s performance from year to year and by showing how the fund’s average annual returns compared with the Index and a broad-based market index. Past performance (before and after taxes) does not indicate future results. All figures assume dividend reinvestment. Performance information is updated daily, monthly, and quarterly and may be obtained at our website, jhinvestments.com, or by calling 888-972-8696 between 8:30 A.M. and 5:00 P.M., Eastern time, on most Business Days (as defined herein).
Please note that after-tax returns reflect the highest individual federal marginal income-tax rate in effect as of the date provided and do not reflect any state or local taxes. Your actual after-tax returns may be different. After-tax returns are not relevant to shares held in an IRA, 401(k), or other tax-advantaged investment plan.
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Fund summary 
Calendar year total returns (%)
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Year-to-date total return. The fund’s total return for the six months ended June 30, 2021, was 16.96%.
Best quarter: Q2 2020, 20.64%
Worst quarter: Q1 2020, -27.99%
Average annual total returns (%)—as of 12/31/20
1 year
Since inception
(03/28/16)
before tax
12.97
14.31
after tax on distributions
12.67
13.94
after tax on distributions, with sale
7.84
11.4
John Hancock Dimensional Industrials Index (reflects no deduction for fees, expenses, or taxes)
13.4
14.83
Russell 1000 Industrials Index (reflects no deduction for fees, expenses, or taxes)*
11.83
13.20
* Effective 9/21/20, the underlying components of the Russell 1000 Industrials Index reflect a new company classification methodology. Consequently, the custom blended benchmark’s performance consists of 100% of the prior methodology through 9/18/20 and 100% of the current methodology thereafter.
Investment management
Investment advisor John Hancock Investment Management LLC
Subadvisor Dimensional Fund Advisors LP
Portfolio management
The following individuals are jointly and primarily responsible for the day-to-day management of the fund’s portfolio.
Joseph Hohn
Vice President and Senior Portfolio Manager
Managed the fund since 2018
Joel Schneider
Deputy Head of Portfolio Management, North America, member of the Investment Committee, Vice President and Senior Portfolio Manager
Managed the fund since 2016
Andres Torres
Vice President and Portfolio Manager
Managed the fund since 2021
Purchase and sale of fund shares
The fund will issue and redeem shares at NAV only with authorized participants and only in a large specified number of shares, each called a “creation unit,” or multiples thereof, in exchange for the deposit or delivery of a basket of securities and/or cash. Except when aggregated in creation units, the shares are not redeemable securities of the fund.
Individual shares of the fund may be purchased and sold only in secondary market transactions through brokers or financial intermediaries. Shares of the fund are listed and traded on the NYSE Arca. Because shares trade at market prices rather than NAV, shares of the fund may trade at a price greater than NAV (premium) or less than NAV (discount).
An investor may incur costs attributable to the difference between the highest price a buyer is willing to pay to purchase shares of the fund (bid) and the lowest price a seller is willing to accept for shares of the fund (ask) when buying or selling shares in the secondary market (bid-ask spread).
Recent information, including information about the Fund’s NAV, market price, premiums and discounts, and bid-ask spreads, is included on the Fund’s website at jhinvestments.com/etf.
Taxes
The fund’s distributions are taxable, and will be taxed as ordinary income and/or capital gains, unless you are investing through a tax-deferred arrangement, such as a 401(k) plan or individual retirement account. Withdrawals from such tax-deferred arrangements may be subject to tax at a later date.
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Fund summary 
Payments to broker-dealers and other financial intermediaries
The advisor and its related companies may pay broker-dealers or other financial intermediaries (such as a bank) for the sale of the fund shares and related services. These payments may create a conflict of interest by influencing your broker-dealer or other intermediary or its employees or associated persons to recommend the fund over another investment. Ask your financial advisor or visit your financial intermediary’s website for more information.
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Fund details
 
Principal investment strategies

Investment Objective: The fund seeks to provide investment results that closely correspond, before fees and expenses, to the performance of the Index.
The Board of Trustees can change the fund’s investment objective and strategy without shareholder approval. The fund will provide written notice to shareholders at least 60 days prior to a change in its 80% investment policy.
The fund normally invests at least 80% of its net assets (plus any borrowings for investment purposes) in securities that compose the fund’s Index. The manager anticipates that, generally, the fund will hold all of the securities that compose the Index in proportion to their weightings in the Index. However, under various circumstances, it may not be possible or practicable to purchase all of those securities in those weightings. In these circumstances, the fund may purchase a sample of securities in the Index. There also may be instances in which the manager may choose to underweight or overweight a security in the Index, purchase securities not in the Index that the manager believes are appropriate to substitute for certain securities in the Index or utilize various combinations of other available investment techniques. The fund may sell securities that are represented in the Index in anticipation of their removal from the Index or purchase securities not represented in the Index in anticipation of their addition to the Index. The fund may also, in order to comply with the tax diversification requirements of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (Code), temporarily invest in securities not included in the Index that are expected to be correlated with the securities included in the Index.
Given the fund’s investment objective of attempting to track the Index, the fund does not follow traditional methods of active investment management, which may involve buying and selling securities based upon analysis of economic and market factors. Also, unlike many investment companies, the fund does not attempt to outperform the Index that it tracks and does not seek temporary defensive positions when markets decline or appear overvalued. The fund may deviate from its principal investment strategies during transition periods, which may include the reassignment of portfolio management, a change in investment objective or strategy, a reorganization or liquidation, or the occurrence of large inflows or outflows.
The fund may concentrate its investments in a particular industry or group of industries to the extent that the Index concentrates in an industry or group of industries.
The fund is non-diversified, which means that it may invest in a smaller number of issuers than a diversified fund and may invest more of its assets in the securities of a single issuer.
Additional investment strategies

Derivatives and other investments
The fund may also invest up to 20% of its assets in securities and other instruments not included in the Index but that the manager believes are correlated to the Index, as well as in, among other instruments, futures, options on futures, and other derivatives to obtain efficient market exposure, and cash, cash equivalents, and money market instruments.
The fund may also invest, to the extent permitted by the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended, in other affiliated and unaffiliated funds, such as open-end or closed-end management investment companies, including other exchange-traded funds (ETFs).
Securities lending
The fund may lend its securities so long as such loans do not represent more than 33⅓% of the fund’s total assets. The borrower will provide collateral to the lending portfolio so that the value of the loaned security will be fully collateralized. The collateral may consist of cash, cash equivalents, or securities issued or guaranteed by the U.S. government or its agencies or instrumentalities. The borrower must also agree to increase the collateral if the value of the loaned securities increases. As with other extensions of credit, there are risks of delay in recovery or even loss of rights in the collateral should the borrower of the securities fail financially. The fund could also lose money if investments made with cash collateral decline in value.
Principal risks of investing
An investment in the fund is not a bank deposit and is not insured or guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or any other government agency. The fund’s shares will go up and down in price, meaning that you could lose money by investing in the fund. Many factors influence a fund’s performance.
Instability in the financial markets has led many governments, including the U.S. government, to take a number of unprecedented actions designed to support certain financial institutions and segments of the financial markets that have experienced extreme volatility and, in some cases, a lack of liquidity. Federal, state, and other governments, and their regulatory agencies or self-regulatory organizations, may take actions that affect the regulation of the instruments in which the fund invests, or the issuers of such instruments, in ways that are unforeseeable. Legislation or regulation may also change the way in which the fund itself is regulated. Such legislation or regulation could limit or preclude the fund’s ability to achieve its investment objective. In addition, political events within the United States and abroad could negatively impact financial markets and the fund’s performance.
Governments or their agencies may also acquire distressed assets from financial institutions and acquire ownership interests in those institutions. The implications of government ownership and disposition of these assets are unclear, and such a program may have positive or negative effects on the liquidity, valuation, and performance of the fund’s portfolio holdings. Furthermore, volatile financial markets can expose the fund to greater market and liquidity risk, increased transaction costs, and potential difficulty in valuing portfolio instruments held by the fund.
The principal risks of investing in the fund are summarized in its fund summary above. Below are descriptions of the main factors that may play a role in shaping the fund’s overall risk profile. The descriptions appear in alphabetical order, not in order of importance. For further details about fund risks, including additional risk factors that are not discussed in this prospectus because they are not considered primary factors, see the fund’s Statement of Additional Information (SAI).
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Fund details 
Active trading market risk
While the fund’s shares are listed on NYSE Arca, there can be no assurance that active trading markets for the shares will develop or be maintained by market makers or authorized participants, and there are no obligations of market makers to make a market in the fund’s shares or to submit purchase or redemption orders for creation units. Although market makers will generally take advantage of differences between the NAV and the trading price of fund shares through arbitrage opportunities, there is no guarantee that they will do so. Decisions by market makers or authorized participants to reduce their role with respect to market making or creation/redemption activities in times of market stress could inhibit the effectiveness of the arbitrage process in maintaining the relationship between the underlying value of the fund’s portfolio securities and the fund’s market price. This reduced effectiveness could result in shares trading at a discount to NAV and also in greater than normal intraday bid-ask spreads for shares.
Authorized participant concentration risk
Only an authorized participant may engage in creation or redemption transactions directly with the fund. The fund has a limited number of intermediaries that act as authorized participants. To the extent that these intermediaries exit the business or are unable to proceed with creation and/or redemption orders with respect to the fund and no other authorized participant is able to create or redeem in their place, shares may trade at a discount to NAV and may face delisting. This may in turn result in a significantly diminished trading market for fund shares.
Economic and market events risk
Events in certain sectors historically have resulted, and may in the future result, in an unusually high degree of volatility in the financial markets, both domestic and foreign. These events have included, but are not limited to: bankruptcies, corporate restructurings, and other similar events; governmental efforts to limit short selling and high frequency trading; measures to address U.S. federal and state budget deficits; social, political, and economic instability in Europe; economic stimulus by the Japanese central bank; dramatic changes in energy prices and currency exchange rates; and China’s economic slowdown. Interconnected global economies and financial markets increase the possibility that conditions in one country or region might adversely impact issuers in a different country or region. Both domestic and foreign equity markets have experienced increased volatility and turmoil, with issuers that have exposure to the real estate, mortgage, and credit markets particularly affected. Banks and financial services companies could suffer losses if interest rates rise or economic conditions deteriorate.
In addition, relatively high market volatility and reduced liquidity in credit and fixed-income markets may adversely affect many issuers worldwide. Actions taken by the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) or foreign central banks to stimulate or stabilize economic growth, such as interventions in currency markets, could cause high volatility in the equity and fixed-income markets. Reduced liquidity may result in less money being available to purchase raw materials, goods, and services from emerging markets, which may, in turn, bring down the prices of these economic staples. It may also result in emerging-market issuers having more difficulty obtaining financing, which may, in turn, cause a decline in their securities prices.
In addition, while interest rates have been unusually low in recent years in the United States and abroad, any decision by the Fed to adjust the target fed funds rate, among other factors, could cause markets to experience continuing high volatility. A significant increase in interest rates may cause a decline in the market for equity securities. Also, regulators have expressed concern that rate increases may contribute to price volatility. These events and the possible resulting market volatility may have an adverse effect on the fund.
Political turmoil within the United States and abroad may also impact the fund. Although the U.S. government has honored its credit obligations, it remains possible that the United States could default on its obligations. While it is impossible to predict the consequences of such an unprecedented event, it is likely that a default by the United States would be highly disruptive to the U.S. and global securities markets and could significantly impair the value of the fund’s investments. Similarly, political events within the United States at times have resulted, and may in the future result, in a shutdown of government services, which could negatively affect the U.S. economy, decrease the value of many fund investments, and increase uncertainty in or impair the operation of the U.S. or other securities markets. The U.S. is also renegotiating many of its global trade relationships and has imposed or threatened to impose significant import tariffs. These actions could lead to price volatility and overall declines in U.S. and global investment markets.
Uncertainties surrounding the sovereign debt of a number of European Union (EU) countries and the viability of the EU have disrupted and may in the future disrupt markets in the United States and around the world. If one or more countries leave the EU or the EU dissolves, the world’s securities markets likely will be significantly disrupted. On January 31, 2020, the United Kingdom (UK) left the EU, commonly referred to as “Brexit,” and the UK ceased to be a member of the EU. Following a transition period during which the EU and the UK Government engaged in a series of negotiations regarding the terms of the UK’s future relationship with the EU, the EU and UK Government signed an agreement on December 30, 2020 regarding the economic relationship between the UK and the EU. This agreement became effective on a provisional basis on January 1, 2021. There remains significant market uncertainty regarding Brexit’s ramifications, and the range and potential implications of possible political, regulatory, economic, and market outcomes are difficult to predict. This uncertainty may affect other countries in the EU and elsewhere, and may cause volatility within the EU, triggering prolonged economic downturns in certain countries within the EU. In addition, Brexit may create additional and substantial economic stresses for the UK, including a contraction of the UK economy and price volatility in UK stocks, decreased trade, capital outflows, devaluation of the British pound, wider corporate bond spreads due to uncertainty and declines in business and consumer spending as well as foreign direct investment. Brexit may also adversely affect UK-based financial firms that have counterparties in the EU or participate in market infrastructure (trading venues, clearing houses, settlement facilities) based in the EU. Additionally, the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic will stretch the resources and deficits of many countries in the EU and throughout the world, increasing the possibility that countries may be unable to make timely payments on their sovereign debt. These events and the resulting market volatility may have an adverse effect on the performance of the fund.
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Fund details 
A widespread health crisis such as a global pandemic could cause substantial market volatility, exchange trading suspensions and closures, which may lead to less liquidity in certain instruments, industries, sectors or the markets generally, and may ultimately affect fund performance. For example, the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has resulted in significant disruptions to global business activity. The impact of a health crisis and other epidemics and pandemics that may arise in the future, could affect the global economy in ways that cannot necessarily be foreseen at the present time. A health crisis may exacerbate other pre-existing political, social and economic risks. Any such impact could adversely affect the fund’s performance, resulting in losses to your investment.
The United States has responded to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and resulting economic distress with fiscal and monetary stimulus packages. In late March 2020, the government passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, a stimulus package providing for over $2.2 trillion in resources to small businesses, state and local governments, and individuals that have been adversely impacted by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. In late December 2020, the government also passed a spending bill that included $900 billion in stimulus relief for the COVID-19 pandemic. Further, in March 2021, the government passed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, a $1.9 trillion stimulus bill to accelerate the United States’ recovery from the economic and health effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, in mid-March 2020 the Fed cut interest rates to historically low levels and promised unlimited and open-ended quantitative easing, including purchases of corporate and municipal government bonds. The Fed also enacted various programs to support liquidity operations and funding in the financial markets, including expanding its reverse repurchase agreement operations, adding $1.5 trillion of liquidity to the banking system, establishing swap lines with other major central banks to provide dollar funding, establishing a program to support money market funds, easing various bank capital buffers, providing funding backstops for businesses to provide bridging loans for up to four years, and providing funding to help credit flow in asset-backed securities markets. The Fed also plans to extend credit to small- and medium-sized businesses.
Political and military events, including in North Korea, Venezuela, Iran, Syria, and other areas of the Middle East, and nationalist unrest in Europe and South America, also may cause market disruptions.
In addition, there is a risk that the prices of goods and services in the United States and many foreign economies may decline over time, known as deflation. Deflation may have an adverse effect on stock prices and creditworthiness and may make defaults on debt more likely. If a country’s economy slips into a deflationary pattern, it could last for a prolonged period and may be difficult to reverse.
Equity securities risk
Common and preferred stocks represent equity ownership in a company. Stock markets are volatile. The price of equity securities will fluctuate, and can decline and reduce the value of a fund investing in equities. The price of equity securities fluctuates based on changes in a company’s financial condition and overall market and economic conditions. The value of equity securities purchased by a fund could decline if the financial condition of the companies in which the fund is invested declines, or if overall market and economic conditions deteriorate. An
issuer’s financial condition could decline as a result of poor management decisions, competitive pressures, technological obsolescence, undue reliance on suppliers, labor issues, shortages, corporate restructurings, fraudulent disclosures, irregular and/or unexpected trading activity among retail investors, or other factors. Changes in the financial condition of a single issuer can impact the market as a whole.
Even a fund that invests in high-quality, or blue chip, equity securities, or securities of established companies with large market capitalizations (which generally have strong financial characteristics), can be negatively impacted by poor overall market and economic conditions. Companies with large market capitalizations may also have less growth potential than smaller companies and may be less able to react quickly to changes in the marketplace.
The fund generally does not attempt to time the market. Because of its exposure to equities, the possibility that stock market prices in general will decline over short or extended periods subjects the fund to unpredictable declines in the value of its investments, as well as periods of poor performance.
ETF trading risk
The market price of shares, like other exchange-traded securities, may include a “bid-ask spread” (the difference between the price at which investors are willing to buy shares and the price at which investors are willing to sell shares). The bid-ask spread may vary over time based on the fund’s trading volume and market liquidity and may increase as a result of a decrease in the fund’s trading volume, the spread of the fund’s underlying securities, or reduced market liquidity. The bid-ask spread may increase significantly in times of market disruption, meaning that shares may trade at a discount to the fund’s NAV. Such discount is likely to be greatest during significant market volatility. In stressed market conditions, the market for a fund’s shares may become less liquid in response to deteriorating liquidity in the markets for the fund’s underlying portfolio holdings. This in turn could lead to differences between the market price of the fund’s shares and the underlying value of those shares.
Shares of the fund, similar to shares of other publicly-traded securities, may be sold short and are therefore subject to the risk of increased volatility and price decreases associated with being sold short.
The fund’s underlying securities may be traded in markets that close at a different time than the NYSE Arca. Liquidity in those securities may be reduced after the applicable closing times. Accordingly, during the time when the NYSE Arca is open but after the applicable market closing, fixing or settlement times, bid-ask spreads on the NYSE Arca and the corresponding premium or discount to the shares’ NAV may widen.
Index risk
The fund will be negatively affected by general declines in the securities and asset classes represented in the Index. In addition, because the fund is not “actively” managed, unless a specific security is removed from the Index, the fund generally would not sell a security because the security’s issuer was in financial trouble. Market disruptions and regulatory restrictions could have an adverse effect on the fund’s ability to adjust its exposure to the required levels in order to track the Index. The fund also does not attempt to take defensive positions under any market conditions, including declining markets. Therefore, the fund’s
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performance could be lower than funds that may actively shift their portfolio assets to take advantage of market opportunities or to lessen the impact of a market decline or a decline in the value of one or more issuers. While the index provider provides descriptions of what the Index is designed to achieve, neither the index provider nor its agents provide any warranty or accept any liability in relation to the quality, accuracy or completeness of the Index or its related data, and they do not guarantee that the Index will be in line with the index provider’s methodology. The fund’s mandate as described in this Prospectus is to provide investment results that closely correspond with the performance of the Index provided by the index provider. The advisor does not provide any warranty or guarantee against the index provider’s or any agent’s errors. The Index is constructed and maintained using third party data that is believed to be reliable, but there is no guarantee of the accuracy or availability of such third party data. In addition, the market value of the Index is calculated by a third party, and there is no guarantee that such calculation will be accurate. Errors in respect of the quality, accuracy and completeness of the data used to compile the Index may occur from time to time. Any such errors may not be identified and corrected for some period of time. These errors and corrections may have an adverse impact on the fund and its shareholders, including in the form of increased costs and/or tracking error. During a period where the Index contains incorrect constituents, the fund would have market exposure to such constituents and would be underexposed to the Index’s other constituents. In addition, neither the fund, the index provider, nor the advisor can guarantee the availability or timeliness of the production of the Index.
Unusual market conditions may cause the Index provider to postpone a scheduled rebalance, which could cause the Index to vary from its normal or expected composition. The postponement of a scheduled rebalance in a time of market volatility could mean that constituents that would otherwise be removed at rebalance due to changes in market capitalizations or other reasons may remain, causing the performance and constituents of the Index to vary from those expected under normal conditions and potentially increasing transaction costs to the fund. Apart from scheduled rebalances, the index provider or its agents may carry out additional ad hoc rebalances to the Index in order, for example, to correct an error in the selection of Index constituents. When the Index is rebalanced and the fund in turn rebalances its portfolio to attempt to increase the correlation between the fund’s portfolio and the Index, any transaction costs and market exposure arising from such portfolio rebalancing may be borne directly by the fund and its shareholders. Therefore, errors and additional ad hoc rebalances carried out by the index provider or its agents to the Index may increase the costs to, and the tracking error risk of, the fund.
Industrials sector risk
Companies in the industrials sector may be affected by general economic conditions, commodity production and pricing, supply and demand fluctuations, environmental and other government regulations, geopolitical events, interest rates, insurance costs, technological developments, liabilities arising from governmental or civil actions, labor relations, import controls and government spending. The value of securities issued by companies in the industrials sector may also be adversely affected by supply and demand related to their specific products or services and industrials sector products in general, as well
as liability for environmental damage and product liability claims and government regulations. For example, the products of manufacturing companies may face obsolescence due to rapid technological developments and frequent new product introduction. Certain companies within this sector, particularly aerospace and defense companies, may be heavily affected by government spending policies because companies involved in this industry rely, to a significant extent, on government demand for their products and services. In addition, securities of industrials companies in transportation may be cyclical and have occasional sharp price movements which may result from economic changes, fuel prices, labor relations and insurance costs, and transportation companies in certain countries may also be subject to significant government regulation and oversight, which may adversely affect their businesses.
Industry or sector investing risk
When a fund’s investments are focused in a particular industry or sector of the economy, they are less broadly invested across industries or sectors than other funds. This means that concentrated funds tend to be more volatile than other funds, and the values of their investments tend to go up and down more rapidly. In addition, a fund that invests in a particular industry or sector is particularly susceptible to the impact of market, economic, political, regulatory, and other conditions and risks affecting that industry or sector. From time to time, a small number of companies may represent a large portion of a single industry or sector or a group of related industries or sectors as a whole.
Large company risk
Larger, more established companies may be unable to respond quickly to new competitive challenges such as changes in technology and consumer tastes. Many larger companies also may not be able to attain the high growth rate of successful smaller companies, especially during extended periods of economic expansion. For purposes of the fund’s investment policies, the market capitalization of a company is based on its capitalization at the time the fund purchases the company’s securities. Market capitalizations of companies change over time. The fund is not obligated to sell a company’s security simply because, subsequent to its purchase, the company’s market capitalization has changed to be outside the capitalization range, if any, in effect for the fund.
Non-diversified risk
Overall risk can be reduced by investing in securities from a diversified pool of issuers, while overall risk is increased by investing in securities of a small number of issuers. If a fund is not diversified within the meaning of the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended, that means it is allowed to invest a large portion of assets in any one issuer or a small number of issuers, which may result in greater susceptibility to associated risks. As a result, credit, market, and other risks associated with a non-diversified fund’s investment strategies or techniques may be more pronounced than for funds that are diversified.
Operational and cybersecurity risk
With the increased use of technologies, such as mobile devices and “cloud”-based service offerings and the dependence on the internet and computer systems to perform necessary business functions, the fund’s service providers are susceptible to operational and information or cybersecurity risks that could result in losses to the fund and its
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shareholders. Intentional cybersecurity breaches include unauthorized access to systems, networks, or devices (such as through “hacking” activity or “phishing”); infection from computer viruses or other malicious software code; and attacks that shut down, disable, slow, or otherwise disrupt operations, business processes, or website access or functionality. Cyber-attacks can also be carried out in a manner that does not require gaining unauthorized access, such as causing denial-of-service attacks on the service providers’ systems or websites rendering them unavailable to intended users or via “ransomware” that renders the systems inoperable until appropriate actions are taken. In addition, unintentional incidents can occur, such as the inadvertent release of confidential information (possibly resulting in the violation of applicable privacy laws).
A cybersecurity breach could result in the loss or theft of customer data or funds, loss or theft of proprietary information or corporate data, physical damage to a computer or network system, or costs associated with system repairs. Such incidents could cause a fund, the advisor, a manager, or other service providers to incur regulatory penalties, reputational damage, additional compliance costs, litigation costs or financial loss. In addition, such incidents could affect issuers in which a fund invests, and thereby cause the fund’s investments to lose value.
Cyber-events have the potential to materially affect the fund and the advisor’s relationships with accounts, shareholders, clients, customers, employees, products, and service providers. The fund has established risk management systems reasonably designed to seek to reduce the risks associated with cyber-events. There is no guarantee that the fund will be able to prevent or mitigate the impact of any or all cyber-events.
The fund is exposed to operational risk arising from a number of factors, including, but not limited to, human error, processing and communication errors, errors of the fund’s service providers, counterparties, or other third parties, failed or inadequate processes and technology or system failures.
In addition, other disruptive events, including (but not limited to) natural disasters and public health crises (such as the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic), may adversely affect the fund’s ability to conduct business, in particular if the fund’s employees or the employees of its service providers are unable or unwilling to perform their responsibilities as a result of any such event. Even if the fund’s employees and the employees of its service providers are able to work remotely, those remote work arrangements could result in the fund’s business operations being less efficient than under normal circumstances, could lead to delays in its processing of transactions, and could increase the risk of cyber-events.
Premium/discount risk
The NAV of the fund and the value of your investment will fluctuate. Disruptions to creations and redemptions or the market price of the fund’s holdings, the existence of extreme market volatility or potential lack of an active trading market for shares may result in shares trading at a significant premium or discount to NAV and/or in a reduced liquidity of your investment. If a shareholder purchases shares at a time when the market price is at a premium to the NAV or sells shares at a time when the market price is at a discount to the NAV, the shareholder may sustain losses. The advisor cannot predict whether shares will trade below, at or above their NAV. Price differences may be due, in large part,
to the fact that supply and demand forces at work in the secondary trading market for shares will be closely related to, but not identical to, the same forces influencing the prices of the securities of the fund’s Index trading individually or in the aggregate at any point in time. While the creation/redemption feature is designed to make it more likely that the fund’s shares normally will trade on stock exchanges at prices close to the fund’s next calculated NAV, exchange prices are not expected to correlate exactly with the fund’s NAV due to timing reasons, supply and demand imbalances and other factors. In addition, disruptions to creations and redemptions, including disruptions at market makers, authorized participants or market participants, or during periods of significant market volatility, may result in trading prices for shares of a fund that differ significantly from its NAV. Any of these factors may lead to the shares trading at a premium or discount to the fund’s NAV. Although market makers will generally take advantage of differences between the NAV and the trading price of fund shares through arbitrage opportunities, there is no guarantee that they will do so.
During periods of volatility, a shareholder may be unable to sell his or her shares or may incur significant losses if he or she sells shares. There are various methods by which investors can purchase and sell shares and various orders that may be placed. Investors should consult their financial intermediary before purchasing or selling shares of the fund.
Quantitative modeling risk
Use of quantitative models carries the risk that the fund may underperform funds that do not utilize such models. The use of quantitative models may affect the fund’s exposure to certain sectors or types of investments and may impact the fund’s relative investment performance depending on whether such sectors or investments are in or out of favor in the market. Successful application of a quantitative model is dependent on the manager’s skill in building and implementing the model. For example, human judgment plays a role in building, utilizing, testing, modifying, and implementing the financial algorithms and formulas used in these models. Quantitative models are subject to technical issues including programming and data inaccuracies, are based on assumptions, and rely on data that is subject to limitations (e.g., inaccuracies, staleness), any of which could adversely affect their effectiveness or predictive value. Quantitative models may not accurately predict future market movements or characteristics due to the fact that market performance can be affected by non-quantitative factors that are not easily integrated into quantitative analysis, among other factors.
Small and mid-sized company risk
Market risk and liquidity risk may be pronounced for securities of companies with medium-sized market capitalizations and are particularly pronounced for securities of companies with smaller market capitalizations. These companies may have limited product lines, markets, or financial resources, or they may depend on a few key employees. The securities of companies with medium and smaller market capitalizations may trade less frequently and in lesser volume than more widely held securities, and their value may fluctuate more sharply than those securities. They may also trade in the OTC market or on a regional exchange, or may otherwise have limited liquidity. Investments in less-seasoned companies with medium and smaller market capitalizations may not only present greater opportunities for growth and capital appreciation, but also involve greater risks than are
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customarily associated with more established companies with larger market capitalizations. These risks apply to all funds that invest in the securities of companies with smaller- or medium-sized market capitalizations. For purposes of the fund’s investment policies, the market capitalization of a company is based on its capitalization at the time the fund purchases the company’s securities. Market capitalizations of companies change over time. The fund is not obligated to sell a company’s security simply because, subsequent to its purchase, the company’s market capitalization has changed to be outside the capitalization range, if any, in effect for the fund.
Tracking error risk
Tracking error is the divergence of the fund’s performance from that of the Index. The fund’s portfolio composition and performance may not match, and may vary substantially from, that of the Index for any period of time, in part because there may be a delay in the fund’s implementation of any changes to the composition of the Index. Tracking error may also occur because of pricing differences, transaction costs, differences in accrual of dividends, differences in the treatment of corporate actions, or the need to meet new or existing regulatory requirements or NYSE Arca listing standards. Unlike the fund, the returns of the Index are not reduced by investment and other operating expenses, including the trading costs associated with implementing changes to its portfolio of investments. Tracking error risk may be heightened during times of market volatility or other unusual market conditions. Because the Index is not subject to the tax diversification requirements to which the fund must adhere, the fund may be required to deviate its investments from the securities and relative weightings of the Index. For tax efficiency purposes, the fund may sell certain securities to realize losses, which will result in a deviation from the Index.
Trading issues risk
Trading in shares of the fund on NYSE Arca may be halted due to market conditions or for reasons that, in the view of NYSE Arca, make trading in shares inadvisable. In addition, trading in shares on NYSE Arca is subject to trading halts caused by extraordinary market volatility pursuant to NYSE Arca’s “circuit breaker” rules. If a trading halt or unanticipated early closing of NYSE Arca occurs, a shareholder may be unable to purchase or sell shares of the fund. There can be no assurance that the requirements of NYSE Arca necessary to maintain the listing of the fund will continue to be met or will remain unchanged.
Value investment style risk
Value securities, as a category, may underperform other segments of the market or the market as a whole and following a value-oriented investment strategy may cause the fund, at times, to underperform equity funds that employ a different investment style.
Additional risks of investing
Derivatives and other strategic transactions risk
The fund may, to a limited extent, invest in derivatives and other strategic transactions. The ability of a fund to utilize derivatives and other strategic transactions to benefit the fund will depend in part on its manager’s ability to predict pertinent market movements and market risk, counterparty risk, credit risk, interest-rate risk, and other risk factors, none of which can be assured. The skills required to utilize
strategic transactions are different from those needed to select a fund’s securities. Even if the manager only uses strategic transactions in a fund primarily to gain exposure to a particular securities market, if the transaction does not have the desired outcome, it could result in a significant loss to a fund. The amount of loss could be more than the principal amount invested. These transactions may also increase the volatility of a fund and may involve a small investment of cash relative to the magnitude of the risks assumed, thereby magnifying the impact of any resulting gain or loss. For example, the potential loss from the use of futures can exceed a fund’s initial investment in such contracts. In addition, these transactions could result in a loss to a fund if the counterparty to the transaction does not perform as promised.

A fund may invest in derivatives, which are financial contracts with a value that depends on, or is derived from, the value of underlying assets, reference rates, or indexes. Derivatives may relate to stocks, bonds, interest rates, currencies or currency exchange rates, and related indexes. A fund may use derivatives for many purposes, including as a substitute for direct investment in securities or other assets. Derivatives may be used in a way to efficiently adjust the exposure of a fund to various securities, markets, and currencies without a fund actually having to sell existing investments and make new investments. This generally will be done when the adjustment is expected to be relatively temporary or in anticipation of effecting the sale of fund assets and making new investments over time. Further, since many derivatives have a leverage component, adverse changes in the value or level of the underlying asset, reference rate, or index can result in a loss substantially greater than the amount invested in the derivative itself. Certain derivatives have the potential for unlimited loss, regardless of the size of the initial investment. When a fund uses derivatives for leverage, investments in that fund will tend to be more volatile, resulting in larger gains or losses in response to market changes. To limit risks associated with leverage, a fund may segregate assets determined to be liquid or, as permitted by applicable regulation, enter into certain offsetting positions to cover its obligations under derivative instruments. For a description of the various derivative instruments the fund may utilize, refer to the SAI.
The regulation of the U.S. and non-U.S. derivatives markets has undergone substantial change in recent years and such change may continue. In particular, the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, and regulations promulgated or proposed thereunder require many derivatives to be cleared and traded on an exchange, expand entity registration requirements, impose business conduct requirements on dealers that enter into swaps with a pension plan, endowment, retirement plan or government entity, and required banks to move some derivatives trading units to a non-guaranteed affiliate separate from the deposit-taking bank or divest them altogether. Although the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has released final rules relating to clearing, reporting, recordkeeping and registration requirements under the legislation, many of the provisions are subject to further final rule making, and thus its ultimate impact remains unclear. New regulations could, among other things, restrict a fund’s ability to engage in derivatives transactions (for example, by making certain types of derivatives transactions no longer available to the fund) and/or increase the costs of such derivatives transactions (for example, by increasing margin or capital requirements), and a fund may
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be unable to fully execute its investment strategies as a result. Limits or restrictions applicable to the counterparties with which a fund engages in derivative transactions also could prevent the fund from using these instruments or affect the pricing or other factors relating to these instruments, or may change the availability of certain investments.
In addition, new Rule 18f-4 (the Derivatives Rule), adopted by the SEC on October 28, 2020, replaces current asset segregation requirements with a new framework for the use of derivatives by registered funds. For funds using a significant amount of derivatives, the Derivatives Rule mandates a fund adopt and/or implement: (i) value at risk limitations in lieu of asset segregation requirements; (ii) a written derivatives risk management program; (iii) new Board oversight responsibilities; and (iv) new reporting and recordkeeping requirements. The Derivatives Rule provides an exception for funds with derivative exposure not exceeding 10% of its net assets, excluding certain currency and interest rate hedging transactions. In addition, the Derivatives Rule provides special treatment for reverse repurchase agreements and similar financing transactions and unfunded commitment agreements. Funds will be required to comply with the Derivatives Rule starting on August 19, 2022.
At any time after the date of this prospectus, legislation may be enacted that could negatively affect the assets of a fund. Legislation or regulation may change the way in which a fund itself is regulated. The advisor cannot predict the effects of any new governmental regulation that may be implemented, and there can be no assurance that any new governmental regulation will not adversely affect a fund’s ability to achieve its investment objectives.

The use of derivative instruments may involve risks different from, or potentially greater than, the risks associated with investing directly in securities and other, more traditional assets. In particular, the use of derivative instruments exposes a fund to the risk that the counterparty to an OTC derivatives contract will be unable or unwilling to make timely settlement payments or otherwise honor its obligations. OTC derivatives transactions typically can only be closed out with the other party to the transaction, although either party may engage in an offsetting transaction that puts that party in the same economic position as if it had closed out the transaction with the counterparty or may obtain the other party’s consent to assign the transaction to a third party. If the counterparty defaults, the fund will have contractual remedies, but there is no assurance that the counterparty will meet its contractual obligations or that, in the event of default, the fund will succeed in enforcing them. For example, because the contract for each OTC derivatives transaction is individually negotiated with a specific counterparty, a fund is subject to the risk that a counterparty may interpret contractual terms (e.g., the definition of default) differently than the fund when the fund seeks to enforce its contractual rights. If that occurs, the cost and unpredictability of the legal proceedings required for the fund to enforce its contractual rights may lead it to decide not to pursue its claims against the counterparty. The fund, therefore, assumes the risk that it may be unable to obtain payments owed to it under OTC derivatives contracts or that those payments may be delayed or made only after the fund has incurred the costs of litigation. While a manager intends to monitor the creditworthiness of counterparties, there can be no assurance that a counterparty will meet its obligations, especially during unusually adverse market conditions.
To the extent a fund contracts with a limited number of counterparties, the fund’s risk will be concentrated and events that affect the creditworthiness of any of those counterparties may have a pronounced effect on the fund. Derivatives are also subject to a number of other risks, including market risk and liquidity risk. Since the value of derivatives is calculated and derived from the value of other assets, instruments, or references, there is a risk that they will be improperly valued. Derivatives also involve the risk that changes in their value may not correlate perfectly with the assets, rates, or indexes they are designed to hedge or closely track. Suitable derivatives transactions may not be available in all circumstances. The fund is also subject to the risk that the counterparty closes out the derivatives transactions upon the occurrence of certain triggering events. In addition, a manager may determine not to use derivatives to reduce risk exposure. Government legislation or regulation could affect the use of derivatives transactions and could limit a fund’s ability to pursue its investment strategies.
A detailed discussion of various strategic transactions appears in the SAI. The following is a list of certain derivatives and other strategic transactions that the fund intends to utilize and the main risks associated with each of them:

 

  Futures contracts. Counterparty risk, liquidity risk (i.e., the inability to enter into closing transactions), and risk of disproportionate loss are the principal risks of engaging in transactions involving futures contracts.

 

  Options on futures. Counterparty risk, liquidity risk (i.e., the inability to enter into closing transactions), and risk of disproportionate loss are the principal risks of engaging in transactions involving options on futures. Counterparty risk does not apply to exchange-traded options.
 
Large shareholder risk
Certain accounts or advisor affiliates, including other funds advised by the advisor or third parties, may from time to time own (beneficially or of record) or control a substantial amount of the fund’s shares, including through seed capital arrangements. Such shareholders may at times be considered to control the fund. Dispositions of a large number of shares by these shareholders may adversely affect the fund’s liquidity and net assets to the extent such transactions are executed directly with the fund in the form of redemptions through an authorized participant (as defined in “Shareholder information—Buying and selling shares” on page 16 of this prospectus), rather than executed in the secondary market. These redemptions may also force the fund to sell securities, which may increase the fund’s brokerage costs. To the extent these large shareholders transact in shares of the fund on the secondary market, such transactions may account for a large percentage of the trading volume on the exchange and may, therefore, have a material effect (upward or downward), on the market price of the fund’s shares.
Tax-advantaged product structure
Unlike conventional mutual funds that are only bought and sold at closing NAVs, the shares of the fund have been designed to be created and redeemed principally in-kind in creation units at each day’s market close at the fund’s NAV and to be tradable in a secondary market on an intra-day basis. These in-kind arrangements are designed to mitigate adverse effects on the fund’s portfolio that could arise from frequent cash purchase and redemption transactions that affect the NAV of the
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fund. Moreover, in contrast to conventional mutual funds, where frequent redemptions can have an adverse tax impact on taxable shareholders because of the need to sell portfolio securities that, in turn, may generate taxable gain, the in-kind redemption mechanism of the fund, to the extent used, generally is not expected to lead to a tax event for shareholders whose shares are not being redeemed. However, the fund may still realize gains related to either cash redemptions or re-balancing transactions which may need to be distributed.
Who’s who
The following are the names of the various entities involved with the fund’s investment and business operations, along with brief descriptions of the role each entity performs.
Board of Trustees
The Trustees oversee the fund’s business activities and retain the services of the various firms that carry out the fund’s operations.
Investment advisor
The investment advisor manages the fund’s business and investment activities.
John Hancock Investment Management LLC
200 Berkeley Street
Boston, MA 02116
Founded in 1968, the advisor is an indirect principally owned subsidiary of John Hancock Life Insurance Company (U.S.A.), which in turn is a subsidiary of Manulife Financial Corporation.
The advisor’s parent company has been helping individuals and institutions work toward their financial goals since 1862. The advisor offers investment solutions managed by leading institutional money managers, taking a disciplined team approach to portfolio management and research, leveraging the expertise of seasoned investment professionals. As of June 30, 2021, the advisor had total assets under management of approximately $169.9 billion.
Subject to general oversight by the Board of Trustees, the advisor manages and supervises the investment operations and business affairs of the fund. The advisor selects, contracts with and compensates one or more subadvisors to manage all or a portion of the fund’s portfolio assets, subject to oversight by the advisor. In this role, the advisor has supervisory responsibility for managing the investment and reinvestment of the fund’s portfolio assets through proactive oversight and monitoring of the subadvisor and the fund, as described in further detail below. The advisor is responsible for developing overall investment strategies for the fund and overseeing and implementing the fund’s continuous investment programs and provides a variety of advisory oversight and investment research services. The advisor also provides management and transition services associated with certain fund events (e.g., strategy, portfolio manager, or subadvisor changes) and coordinates and oversees services provided under other agreements.
The advisor has ultimate responsibility to oversee a subadvisor and recommend to the Board of Trustees its hiring, termination, and replacement. In this capacity, the advisor, among other things: (i) monitors on a daily basis the compliance of the subadvisor with the investment objectives and related policies of the fund; (ii) monitors significant changes that may impact the subadvisor’s overall business
and regularly performs due diligence reviews of the subadvisor; (iii) reviews the performance of the subadvisor; and (iv) reports periodically on such performance to the Board of Trustees. The advisor employs a team of investment professionals who provide these ongoing research and monitoring services.
The fund relies on an order from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) permitting the advisor, subject to approval by the Board of Trustees, to appoint a subadvisor or change the terms of a subadvisory agreement without obtaining shareholder approval. The fund, therefore, is able to change subadvisors or the fees paid to a subadvisor, from time to time, without the expense and delays associated with obtaining shareholder approval of the change. This order does not, however, permit the advisor to appoint a subadvisor that is an affiliate of the advisor or the fund (other than by reason of serving as a subadvisor to the fund), or to increase the subadvisory fee of an affiliated subadvisor, without the approval of the shareholders.
Management fee
The fund pays the advisor a management fee for its services to the fund. The advisor in turn pays the fees of the subadvisor. The management fee is stated as an annual percentage of the aggregate net assets of the fund (together with the assets of any other applicable fund identified in the advisory agreement) determined in accordance with the following schedule, and that rate is applied to the average daily net assets of the fund.
Average daily net assets ($)
Annual rate (%)
All asset levels
0.38
During its most recent fiscal year, the fund paid the advisor a management fee equal to 0.05% of average daily net assets (including any waivers and/or reimbursements).
The basis for the Board of Trustees’ approval of the advisory fees, and of the investment advisory agreement overall, including the subadvisory agreement, is discussed in the fund’s most recent semiannual shareholder report for the period ended October 31.
Additional information about fund expenses
The fund’s annual operating expenses will likely vary throughout the period and from year to year. The fund’s expenses for the current fiscal year may be higher than the expenses listed in the fund’s Annual fund operating expenses table, for some of the following reasons: (i) a significant decrease in average net assets may result in a higher advisory fee rate if any advisory fee breakpoints are not achieved; (ii) a significant decrease in average net assets may result in an increase in the expense ratio because certain fund expenses do not decrease as asset levels decrease; or (iii) fees may be incurred for extraordinary events such as fund tax expenses.
As may be described in “Fund summary - Fees and expenses” on page 1 of this prospectus, the advisor has contractually agreed to waive a portion of its management fee and/or reimburse expenses for certain funds of the John Hancock funds complex, including the fund (the participating portfolios). The waiver equals, on an annualized basis, 0.0100% of that portion of the aggregate net assets of all the participating portfolios that exceeds $75 billion but is less than or equal to $125 billion; 0.0125% of that portion of the aggregate net assets of
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all the participating portfolios that exceeds $125 billion but is less than or equal to $150 billion; 0.0150% of that portion of the aggregate net assets of all the participating portfolios that exceeds $150 billion but is less than or equal to $175 billion; 0.0175% of that portion of the aggregate net assets of all the participating portfolios that exceeds $175 billion but is less than or equal to $200 billion; 0.0200% of that portion of the aggregate net assets of all the participating portfolios that exceeds $200 billion but is less than or equal to $225 billion; and 0.0225% of that portion of the aggregate net assets of all the participating portfolios that exceeds $225 billion. The amount of the reimbursement is calculated daily and allocated among all the participating portfolios in proportion to the daily net assets of each participating portfolio. This agreement expires on July 31, 2023, unless renewed by mutual agreement of the fund and the advisor based upon a determination that this is appropriate under the circumstances at that time.
Subadvisor
The subadvisor handles the fund’s portfolio management activities, subject to oversight by the advisor.
Dimensional Fund Advisors LP (Dimensional)
6300 Bee Cave Road, Building One
Austin, Texas 78746
Dimensional was organized in 1981 as Dimensional Fund Advisors, Inc., a Delaware corporation, and in 2006, it converted its legal name and organizational form to Dimensional Fund Advisors LP, a Delaware limited partnership. Dimensional is engaged in the business of providing investment management services. Since its organization, Dimensional has provided investment management services primarily to institutional investors and mutual funds. As of June 30, 2021, Dimensional and its advisory affiliates managed approximately $660 billion in assets under management.
The following are brief biographical profiles of the leaders of the fund’s investment management team, in alphabetical order. These managers are jointly and primarily responsible for the day-to-day management of the fund’s portfolio. These managers are employed by Dimensional. For more details about these individuals, including information about their compensation, other accounts they manage, and any investments they may have in the fund, see the SAI.
Joseph Hohn

Vice President and Senior Portfolio Manager

Managed the fund since 2018

Portfolio Manager for Dimensional (since 2015)

Joined Dimensional in 2012
 
Joel Schneider

Deputy Head of Portfolio Management, North America, member of the Investment Committee, Vice President and Senior Portfolio Manager

Managed the fund since 2016

Portfolio Manager for Dimensional (since 2013)
 
Andres Torres

Vice President and Portfolio Manager

Managed the fund since 2021
 

Portfolio Manager for Dimensional (since 2018)

Joined Dimensional in 2015
 
Custodian
The custodian holds the fund’s assets, settles all portfolio trades, and collects most of the valuation data required for calculating the fund’s net asset value.
State Street Bank and Trust Company
State Street Financial Center
One Lincoln Street
Boston, MA 02111
Principal distributor
The principal distributor distributes creation units for the fund on an agency basis, does not maintain a secondary market in shares of the fund, and has no role in determining the investment policies of the fund or the securities that are purchased or sold by the fund. The distributor is not affiliated with the advisor, the subadvisor or any other service provider for the fund.
Foreside Fund Services, LLC
Three Canal Plaza, Suite 100
Portland, ME 04101
Transfer agent
The transfer agent handles shareholder services, including recordkeeping and statements, distribution of dividends, and processing of creation and redemption orders.
State Street Bank and Trust Company
State Street Financial Center
One Lincoln Street
Boston, MA 02111
Additional information
The fund has entered into contractual arrangements with various parties that provide services to the fund, which may include, among others, the advisor, subadvisor, custodian, principal distributor, and transfer agent, as described above and in the SAI. Fund shareholders are not parties to, or intended or “third-party” beneficiaries of, any of these contractual arrangements. These contractual arrangements are not intended to, nor do they, create in any individual shareholder or group of shareholders any right, either directly or on behalf of the fund, to either: (a) enforce such contracts against the service providers; or (b) seek any remedy under such contracts against the service providers.
This prospectus provides information concerning the fund that you should consider in determining whether to purchase shares of the fund. Each of this prospectus, the SAI, or any contract that is an exhibit to the fund’s registration statement, is not intended to, nor does it, give rise to an agreement or contract between the fund and any investor. Each such document also does not give rise to any contract or create rights in any individual shareholder, group of shareholders, or other person. The foregoing disclosure should not be read to suggest any waiver of any rights conferred by federal or state securities laws.
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Fund details 
Financial highlights
This table details the financial performance of the fund, including total return information showing how much an investment in the fund has increased or decreased for the periods shown below (assuming reinvestment of all dividends and distributions). Certain information reflects financial results for a single fund share.
The financial statements of the fund as of April 30, 2021, have been audited by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC), the fund’s independent registered public accounting firm. The report of PwC, along with the fund’s financial statements in the fund’s annual report for the fiscal year ended April 30, 2021, has been incorporated by reference into the SAI. Copies of the fund’s most recent annual report are available upon request.
Multifactor Industrials ETF
Per share operating performance
Period ended
4-30-21
4-30-20
4-30-19
4-30-18
4-30-17
Net asset value, beginning of period
$31.78
$37.41
$33.75
$30.40
$25.37
Net investment income1
0.42
0.52
0.59
0.33
0.35
Net realized and unrealized gain (loss) on investments
19.70
(5.64
)
3.69
3.33
4.94
Total from investment operations
20.12
(5.12
)
4.28
3.66
5.29
Less distributions
From net investment income
(0.43
)
(0.51
)
(0.62
)
(0.31
)
(0.26
)
Net asset value, end of period
$51.47
$31.78
$37.41
$33.75
$30.40
Total return (%)2
63.78
(13.92
)
13.16
12.04
20.95
Ratios and supplemental data
Net assets, end of period (in millions)
$51
$22
$32
$32
$21
Ratios (as a percentage of average net assets):
Expenses before reductions
0.73
0.86
0.90
0.98
1.12
Expenses including reductions
0.40
0.40
0.47
0.50
0.50
Net investment income
1.01
1.42
1.70
0.98
1.24
Portfolio turnover (%)3
13
21
49
3
8
1
Based on average daily shares outstanding.
2
Total returns would have been lower had certain expenses not been reduced during the applicable periods.
3
Portfolio turnover rate excludes securities received or delivered from in-kind transactions.
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Shareholder information
 
Buying and selling shares
Shares of the fund may be acquired or redeemed directly from the fund only in creation units or multiples thereof, as discussed in the “Creations and redemptions” section of this prospectus. Only an authorized participant may engage in creation or redemption transactions directly with the fund. An authorized participant is either a “participating party” (i.e., a broker-dealer or other participant in the clearing process through the Continuous Net Settlement System of the National Securities Clearing Corporation) or a Depository Trust Company participant, in either case, who has executed an agreement with the distributor and transfer agent with respect to creations and redemptions of creation units. Once created, shares of the fund generally trade in the secondary market in amounts less than a creation unit.
Shares of the fund are listed for trading on a national securities exchange during the trading day. Shares can be bought and sold throughout the trading day like shares of other publicly traded companies. However, there can be no guarantee that an active trading market will develop or be maintained, or that the fund shares listing will continue or remain unchanged. The Trust does not impose any minimum investment for shares of a fund purchased on an exchange. Buying or selling the fund’s shares involves certain costs that apply to all securities transactions. When buying or selling shares of the fund through a financial intermediary, you may incur a brokerage commission or other charges determined by your financial intermediary. Due to these brokerage costs, if any, frequent trading may detract significantly from investment returns. In addition, you may also incur the cost of the spread (the difference between the bid price and the ask price). The commission is frequently a fixed amount and may be a significant cost for investors seeking to buy or sell small amounts of shares. The spread varies over time for shares of the fund based on its trading volume and market liquidity, and is generally less if the fund has more trading volume and market liquidity and more if the fund has less trading volume and market liquidity.
The fund’s primary listing exchange is NYSE Arca. NYSE Arca is open for trading Monday through Friday and is closed on the following holidays: New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Presidents’ Day, Good Friday, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.
A “Business Day” with respect to the fund is each day the New York Stock Exchange, NYSE Arca and the Trust are open and includes any day that the fund is required to be open under Section 22(e) of the Investment Company Act. Orders from authorized participants to create or redeem creation units will only be accepted on a Business Day. On days when NYSE Arca closes earlier than normal, the fund may require orders to create or redeem creation units to be placed earlier in the day. Please see the SAI for more information.
Section 12(d)(1) of the Investment Company Act restricts investments by registered investment companies and companies relying on Section 3(c)(1) or Section 3(c)(7) of the Investment Company Act in the securities of other investment companies.
The Board of Trustees has not adopted a policy of monitoring for frequent purchases and redemptions of fund shares (“frequent trading”)
that appear to attempt to take advantage of potential arbitrage opportunities presented by a lag between a change in the value of the fund’s portfolio securities after the close of the primary markets for the fund’s portfolio securities and the reflection of that change in the fund’s NAV (“market timing”). The Trust believes this is appropriate because ETFs, such as the fund, are intended to be attractive to arbitrageurs, as trading activity is critical to ensuring that the market price of fund shares remains at or close to NAV. Since the fund issues and redeems creation units at NAV plus applicable transaction fees, and the fund’s shares may be purchased and sold on NYSE Arca at prevailing market prices, the risks of frequent trading are limited. Registered investment companies are permitted to invest in the fund beyond the limits set forth in Section 12(d)(1) subject to certain terms and conditions set forth in an SEC exemptive order covering the Trust (until such exemptive order is rescinded by the SEC) or pursuant to or an exemptive rule adopted by the SEC.
Rule 12b-1 fees
Rule 12b-1 fees may be paid to the fund’s distributor and may be used by the distributor for expenses relating to the distribution of, and shareholder or administrative services for holders of, creation units, and for the payment of service fees that come within Rule 2341 of the Conduct Rules of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).
Because Rule 12b-1 fees may be paid out of the fund’s assets on an ongoing basis, over time they may increase the cost of your investment and may cost shareholders more than other types of sales charges. Currently, no Rule 12b-1 fees are charged.
Your broker-dealer or agent may charge you a fee to effect transactions in creation units.
Payment to broker-dealers and other financial intermediaries
The advisor or its affiliates make payments to broker-dealers, registered investment advisers, banks or other intermediaries (together, “intermediaries”) related to marketing activities and presentations, educational training programs, conferences, the development of technology platforms and reporting systems, or their making shares of the fund and certain other John Hancock funds available to their customers generally and in certain investment programs. Such payments, which may be significant to the intermediary, are not made by the fund. Rather, such payments are made by the advisor or its affiliates from their own resources, which come directly or indirectly in part from fees paid by the John Hancock funds complex. Payments of this type are sometimes referred to as revenue-sharing payments. A financial intermediary may make decisions about which investment options it recommends or makes available, or the level of services provided, to its customers based on the payments it is eligible to receive. Therefore, such payments to an intermediary create conflicts of interest between the intermediary and its customers and may cause the intermediary to recommend the fund or other John Hancock funds over another investment. More information regarding these payments is contained in the fund’s SAI. Please contact your salesperson or other investment professional for more information regarding any such payments his or her firm may receive from the advisor or its affiliates.
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Shareholder information 
Valuation of fund shares
The NAV for shares of the fund is normally determined once daily as of the close of regular trading on the NYSE (typically 4:00 P.M., Eastern time, on each Business Day that the NYSE is open). In case of emergency or other disruption resulting in the NYSE not opening for trading or the NYSE closing at a time other than the regularly scheduled close, the NAV may be determined as of the regularly scheduled close of the NYSE pursuant to the fund’s Valuation Policies and Procedures. The time at which shares and transactions are priced and until which orders are accepted may vary to the extent permitted by the Securities and Exchange Commission and applicable regulations. On holidays or other days when the NYSE is closed, the NAV is not calculated and the fund does not transact purchase or redemption requests. Trading of securities that are primarily listed on foreign exchanges may take place on weekends and U.S. business holidays on which the fund’s NAV is not calculated. Consequently, the fund’s portfolio securities may trade and the NAV of the fund’s shares may be significantly affected on days when a shareholder will not be able to purchase or redeem shares of the fund.
The NAV is computed by dividing the total assets of the fund, minus liabilities of the fund, by the number of fund shares outstanding. The current NAV of the fund is available on our website at jhinvestments.com/etf.
Valuation of portfolio securities
Portfolio securities are valued by various methods that are generally described below. Portfolio securities also may be fair valued by the fund’s Pricing Committee in certain instances pursuant to procedures established by the Trustees. Equity securities are generally valued at the last sale price or, for certain markets, the official closing price as of the close of the relevant exchange. Securities not traded on a particular day are valued using last available bid prices. A security that is listed or traded on more than one exchange is typically valued at the price on the exchange where the security was acquired or most likely will be sold. In certain instances, the Pricing Committee may determine to value equity securities using prices obtained from another exchange or market if trading on the exchange or market on which prices are typically obtained did not open for trading as scheduled, or if trading closed earlier than scheduled, and trading occurred as normal on another exchange or market. Equity securities traded principally in foreign markets are typically valued using the last sale price or official closing price in the relevant exchange or market. On any day a foreign market is closed and the NYSE is open, any foreign securities will typically be valued using the last price or official closing price obtained from the relevant exchange on the prior business day. Debt obligations are typically valued based on evaluated prices provided by an independent pricing vendor. The value of securities denominated in foreign currencies is converted into U.S. dollars at the exchange rate supplied by an independent pricing vendor, generally determined as of 4:00 p.m. London time. Forward foreign currency contracts are valued at the prevailing forward rates which are based on foreign currency exchange spot rates and forward points supplied by an independent pricing vendor. Exchange-traded options are valued at the mid-price of the last quoted bid and ask prices. Futures contracts whose settlement prices are determined as of the close of the NYSE are typically valued based on the settlement price while other futures contracts are typically valued at the last traded price on the
exchange on which they trade. Foreign equity index futures that trade in the electronic trading market subsequent to the close of regular trading may be valued at the last traded price in the electronic trading market as of the close of the NYSE. Swaps and unlisted options are generally valued using evaluated prices obtained from an independent pricing vendor. Shares of other open-end investment companies that are not ETFs (underlying funds) are valued based on the NAVs of such underlying funds.
Pricing vendors may use matrix pricing or valuation models that utilize certain inputs and assumptions to derive values, including transaction data, broker-dealer quotations, credit quality information, general market conditions, news, and other factors and assumptions. The fund may receive different prices when it sells odd-lot positions than it would receive for sales of institutional round lot positions. Pricing vendors generally value securities assuming orderly transactions of institutional round lot sizes, but a fund may hold or transact in such securities in smaller, odd lot sizes.
The Pricing Committee engages in oversight activities with respect to pricing vendors, which includes, among other things, monitoring significant or unusual price fluctuations above predetermined tolerance levels from the prior day, back-testing of pricing vendor prices against actual trades, conducting periodic due diligence meetings and reviews, and periodically reviewing the inputs, assumptions and methodologies used by these vendors. Nevertheless, market quotations, official closing prices, or information furnished by a pricing vendor could be inaccurate, which could lead to a security being valued incorrectly.
If market quotations, official closing prices, or information furnished by a pricing vendor are not readily available or are otherwise deemed unreliable or not representative of the fair value of such security because of market- or issuer-specific events, a security will be valued at its fair value as determined in good faith by the Trustees. The Trustees are assisted in their responsibility to fair value securities by the fund’s Pricing Committee, and the actual calculation of a security’s fair value may be made by the Pricing Committee acting pursuant to the procedures established by the Trustees. In certain instances, therefore, the Pricing Committee may determine that a reported valuation does not reflect fair value, based on additional information available or other factors, and may accordingly determine in good faith the fair value of the assets, which may differ from the reported valuation.
Fair value pricing of securities is intended to help ensure that the fund’s NAV reflects the fair market value of the fund’s portfolio securities as of the close of regular trading on the NYSE (as opposed to a value that no longer reflects market value as of such close). The use of fair value pricing has the effect of valuing a security based upon the price the fund might reasonably expect to receive if it sold that security in an orderly transaction between market participants, but does not guarantee that the security can be sold at the fair value price. Further, because of the inherent uncertainty and subjective nature of fair valuation, a fair valuation price may differ significantly from the value that would have been used had a readily available market price for the investment existed and these differences could be material.
Regarding the fund’s investment in an underlying fund that is not an ETF, which (as noted above) is valued at such underlying fund’s NAV, the prospectus for such underlying fund explains the circumstances and
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Shareholder information 
effects of fair value pricing for that underlying fund. The fund relies on a third-party service provider for assistance with the daily calculation of the fund’s NAV. The third-party service provider, in turn, relies on other parties for certain pricing data and other inputs used in the calculation of the fund’s NAV. Therefore, the fund is subject to certain operational risks associated with reliance on its service provider and that service provider’s sources of pricing and other data. NAV calculation may be adversely affected by operational risks arising from factors such as errors or failures in systems and technology. Such errors or failures may result in inaccurately calculated NAVs, delays in the calculation of NAVs and/or the inability to calculate NAV over extended time periods. The fund may be unable to recover any losses associated with such failures.
Distributions
The fund pays distributions from its investment income and from net realized capital gains.
Distributions from net investment income and distributions from net capital gains, if any, are declared and paid as follows:
Investment income dividends
Capital gains distributions
Declared
Paid
Declared and Paid
John Hancock Multifactor Industrials ETF
Semiannually
Semiannually
Annually
Dividends and other distributions on shares of the fund are distributed on a pro rata basis to beneficial owners of such shares. Dividend payments are made through Depository Trust Company (DTC) participants and indirect participants (each as described in the “Book entry” section, below) to beneficial owners then of record with proceeds received from the fund.
No dividend reinvestment service is provided by the fund. Broker-dealers may make available the DTC book-entry dividend reinvestment service for use by beneficial owners of the fund for reinvestment of their dividend distributions. Beneficial owners should contact their broker to determine the availability and costs of the service and the details of participation therein. Brokers may require beneficial owners to adhere to specific procedures and timetables. If this service is available and used, dividend distributions of both income and realized gains will be automatically reinvested in additional whole shares of the fund purchased in the secondary market.
Book entry
DTC serves as securities depository for the shares. (The shares may be held only in book-entry form; stock certificates will not be issued.) DTC, or its nominee, is the record or registered owner of all outstanding shares. Beneficial ownership of shares will be shown on the records of DTC or its participants (described below). Beneficial owners of shares are not entitled to have shares registered in their names, will not receive or be entitled to receive physical delivery of certificates in definitive form and are not considered the registered holder thereof. Accordingly, to exercise any rights of a holder of shares, each beneficial owner must rely on the procedures of: (i) DTC; (ii) “DTC participants,” i.e., securities brokers and dealers, banks, trust companies, clearing corporations and certain other organizations, some of whom (and/or their representatives) own DTC; and (iii) “indirect participants,” i.e., brokers,
dealers, banks and trust companies that clear through or maintain a custodial relationship with a DTC Participant, either directly or indirectly, through which such beneficial owner holds its interests. The Trust understands that under existing industry practice, in the event the Trust requests any action of holders of shares, or a beneficial owner desires to take any action that DTC, as the record owner of all outstanding shares, is entitled to take, DTC would authorize the DTC participants to take such action and that the DTC participants would authorize the indirect participants and beneficial owners acting through such DTC participants to take such action and would otherwise act upon the instructions of beneficial owners owning through them. As described above, the Trust recognizes DTC or its nominee as the owner of all shares for all purposes.
Creations and redemptions
Prior to trading in the secondary market, shares of the fund are “created” at NAV by market makers, large investors and institutions only in block-size creation units. Each “creator” or “authorized participant” enters into an authorized participant agreement with the fund’s distributor.
A creation transaction, which is subject to acceptance by the transfer agent, generally takes place when an authorized participant deposits into the fund a designated portfolio of securities and/or cash in exchange for a specified number of creation units.
Similarly, shares can be redeemed only in creation units, generally for a designated portfolio of securities and/or cash. Except when aggregated in creation units, shares are not redeemable by the fund.
The prices at which creations and redemptions occur are based on the next calculation of NAV after a creation or redemption order is received in an acceptable form under the authorized participant agreement.
Only an authorized participant may create or redeem creation units directly with the fund. In the event of a system failure or other interruption, including disruptions at market makers or authorized participants, orders to purchase or redeem creation units either may not be executed according to the fund’s instructions or may not be executed at all, or the fund may not be able to place or change orders.
When the fund engages in in-kind transactions, the fund intends to comply with the U.S. federal securities laws in accepting securities for deposit and satisfying redemptions with redemption securities by, among other means, assuring that any securities accepted for deposit and any securities used to satisfy redemption requests will be sold in transactions that would be exempt from registration under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (Securities Act). Further, an authorized participant that is not a “qualified institutional buyer,” as such term is defined under Rule 144A of the Securities Act, will not be able to receive restricted securities eligible for resale under Rule 144A.
Creations and redemptions must be made through a firm that is either a member of the Continuous Net Settlement System of the National Securities Clearing Corporation or a DTC participant and has executed an agreement with the distributor with respect to creations and redemptions of creation unit aggregations. Information about the procedures regarding creation and redemption of creation units (including the cut-off times for receipt of creation and redemption orders) and the applicable transaction fees is included in the fund’s SAI.
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Shareholder information 
The fund typically expects to wire redemption proceeds between 1 and 3 business days following the receipt of the redemption request. Processing time is not dependent on the chosen delivery method. In unusual circumstances, the fund may temporarily suspend the processing of sell requests or may postpone payment of proceeds for up to three Business Days or longer, as allowed by federal securities laws.
Under normal market conditions, the fund typically expects to meet redemption requests through holdings of cash or cash equivalents or through sales of portfolio securities, and may access other available liquidity facilities. In unusual or stressed market conditions, such as, for example, during a period of time in which a foreign securities exchange is closed, in addition to the methods used in normal market conditions, the fund may meet redemption requests through the use of its line of credit, interfund lending facility, redemptions in kind, or such other liquidity means or facilities as the fund may have in place from time to time.
Taxation
As with any investment, you should consider how your investment in the fund will be taxed. The tax information below is provided as general information. More tax information is available in the SAI. You should consult your tax advisor about the federal, state, local or foreign tax consequences of your investment in the fund. Except as otherwise noted, the tax information provided assumes that you are a U.S. citizen or resident.
Unless your investment is through an IRA or other tax-advantaged account, you should carefully consider the possible tax consequences of fund distributions and the sale of your fund shares.
Distributions
The fund contemplates declaring as dividends each year all or substantially all of its taxable income. Distributions you receive from the fund are generally subject to federal income tax, and may also be subject to state or local taxes. This is true whether you reinvest your distributions in additional fund shares or receive them in cash. For federal income tax purposes, the fund’s distributions attributable to net investment income and short-term capital gains are taxable to you as ordinary income while distributions of long-term capital gains are taxable to you as long-term capital gains, no matter how long you have owned your fund shares.
Under current provisions of the Code, the maximum individual rate applicable to long-term capital gains is generally either 15% or 20%, depending on whether the individual’s income exceeds certain threshold amounts. Fund distributions to noncorporate shareholders attributable to dividends received by the fund from U.S. and certain qualified foreign corporations will generally be taxed at the long-term capital gain rate, as long as certain other requirements are met. For these lower rates to apply, the non-corporate shareholder must own fund shares for at least 61 days during the 121-day period beginning 60 days before the fund’s ex-dividend date. The percentage of dividends eligible for the lower rates may be reduced as a result of the fund’s securities lending activities, hedging activities or high portfolio turnover rate.
A percentage of the fund’s dividends paid to corporate shareholders may be eligible for the corporate dividends-received deduction. This
percentage may, however, be reduced as a result of the fund’s securities lending activities, hedging activities or high portfolio turnover rate.
Distributions in excess of the fund’s current and accumulated earnings and profits are treated as a tax-free return of your investment to the extent of your basis in the shares, and generally as capital gain thereafter. A return of capital, which for tax purposes is treated as a return of your investment, reduces your basis in shares, thus reducing any loss or increasing any gain on a subsequent taxable disposition of shares. A distribution will reduce the fund’s NAV per share and may be taxable to you as ordinary income or capital gain even though, from an economic standpoint, the distribution may constitute a return of capital. Character and tax status of all distributions will be available to shareholders after the close of each calendar year.
An additional 3.8% Medicare tax is imposed on certain net investment income (including ordinary dividends and capital gain distributions received from the fund and net gains from redemptions or other taxable dispositions of fund shares) of U.S. individuals, estates and trusts to the extent that such person’s “modified adjusted gross income” (in the case of an individual) or “adjusted gross income” (in the case of an estate or trust) exceeds certain threshold amounts.
The fund’s transactions in derivatives (such as futures contracts and swaps) will be subject to special tax rules, the effect of which may be to accelerate income to the fund, defer losses to the fund, cause adjustments in the holding periods of the fund’s securities and convert short-term capital losses into long-term capital losses. These rules could therefore affect the amount, timing and character of distributions to you. The fund’s use of derivatives may result in the fund realizing more short-term capital gains and ordinary income subject to tax at ordinary income tax rates than it would if it did not use derivatives.
Although distributions are generally treated as taxable to you in the year they are paid, distributions declared in October, November or December but paid in January are taxable as if they were paid in December.
The fund may be subject to foreign withholding or other foreign taxes on income or gain from certain foreign securities. In general, the fund may deduct these taxes in computing its taxable income.
If you buy shares of the fund before it makes a distribution, the distribution will be taxable to you even though it may actually be a return of a portion of your investment. This is known as “buying into a dividend.”
Taxes on creations and redemptions of creation units
A person who exchanges securities for creation units generally will recognize a gain or loss. The gain or loss will be equal to the difference between the market value of the creation units at the time of exchange and the sum of the exchanger’s aggregate basis in the securities surrendered and the amount of any cash paid for such creation units. A person who exchanges creation units for securities will generally recognize a gain or loss equal to the difference between the exchanger’s basis in the creation units and the sum of the aggregate market value of the securities received. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), however, may assert that a loss realized upon an exchange of primarily securities for creation units cannot be deducted currently under the rules governing “wash sales,” or on the basis that there has been no significant change in economic position. Persons exchanging securities for creation units or redeeming creation units should consult their own tax adviser
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Shareholder information 
with respect to whether wash sale rules apply and when a loss might be deductible and the tax treatment of any creation or redemption transaction.
Under current U.S. federal income tax laws, any capital gain or loss realized upon a redemption (or creation) of creation units is generally treated as long-term capital gain or loss if the shares (or securities surrendered) have been held for more than one year and as a short-term capital gain or loss if the shares (or securities surrendered) have been held for one year or less.
Sales of fund shares
Your sale of fund shares is a taxable transaction for federal income tax purposes, and may also be subject to state and local taxes. When you sell your shares, you will generally recognize a capital gain or loss in an amount equal to the difference between your adjusted tax basis in the shares and the amount received. Generally, this capital gain or loss is long-term or short-term depending on whether your holding period exceeds one year, except that any loss realized on shares held for six months or less will be treated as a long-term capital loss to the extent of any capital gain dividends that were received on the shares. Additionally, any loss realized on a sale or redemption of shares of a fund may be disallowed under “wash sale” rules to the extent the shares disposed of are replaced with other shares of that fund within a period of 61 days beginning 30 days before and ending 30 days after the date of disposition, such as pursuant to a dividend reinvestment in shares of that fund. If disallowed, the loss will be reflected in an adjustment to the basis of the shares acquired.
Other information
You may be subject to backup withholding at a rate of 24% with respect to taxable distributions if you do not provide your correct taxpayer identification number, or certify that it is correct, or if you have been notified by the IRS that you are subject to backup withholding.
Non-U.S. investors are generally subject to U.S. withholding tax with respect to dividends received from the fund and may be subject to estate tax with respect to their fund shares.
Withholding of U.S. tax (at a 30% rate) is required with respect to payments of taxable dividends made to certain non-U.S. entities that fail to comply (or be deemed compliant) with extensive new reporting and withholding requirements designed to inform the U.S. Department of the Treasury of U.S.-owned foreign investment accounts. Shareholders may be requested to provide additional information to enable the applicable withholding agent to determine whether withholding is required.
Legislation passed by Congress requires reporting to you and the IRS annually on Form 1099-B not only the gross proceeds of fund shares you sell or redeem but also their cost basis. Shareholders should contact their intermediaries with respect to reporting of cost basis and available elections with respect to their accounts. You should carefully review the cost basis information provided by the applicable intermediary and make any additional basis, holding period or other adjustments that are required when reporting these amounts on your federal income tax returns.
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Index provider
 
Index, index provider, and calculation agent
The Index is created and sponsored by an affiliated person of the fund. The Index was developed, and the methodology underlying the construction of the Index is maintained, by Dimensional, which also serves as subadvisor to the fund. Dimensional has entered into a Calculation Agent Agreement with ICE Data Indices, LLC (Calculation Agent) to calculate and disseminate information about the market value of the Index. The Calculation Agent also tracks corporate actions that result in adjustments to the Index.
The Index is governed by a published rule-based methodology. Changes to the methodology will be publicly disclosed prior to implementation.
The fund is entitled to use the Index pursuant to a sublicensing arrangement with John Hancock Investment Management LLC, investment advisor to the fund, which in turn has a licensing agreement with Dimensional.
The Index provider may delay or change a scheduled rebalancing or reconstitution of the Index or the implementation of certain rules at its sole discretion.
Disclaimers
Neither John Hancock Investment Management LLC nor Dimensional Fund Advisors LP guarantee the accuracy and/or the completeness of the Index or any data included therein, and neither John Hancock Investment Management LLC nor Dimensional Fund Advisors LP shall have any liability for any errors, omissions or interruptions therein. Neither John Hancock Investment Management LLC nor Dimensional Fund Advisors LP make any warranty, express or implied, as to results to be obtained by the fund, owners of the shares of the fund or any other person or entity from the use of the Index, trading based on the Index, or any data included therein, either in connection with the fund or for any other use. Neither John Hancock Investment Management LLC nor Dimensional Fund Advisors LP makes any express or implied warranties, and expressly disclaim all warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose or use with respect to the Index or any data included therein. Without limiting any of the foregoing, in no event shall either John Hancock Investment Management LLC or Dimensional Fund Advisors LP have any liability for any special, punitive, direct, indirect or consequential damages (including lost profits) arising out of matters relating to the use of the Index, even if notified of the possibility of such damages.
ICE DATA INDICES, LLC
The Index is calculated by ICE Data Indices, LLC or its affiliates (in this disclaimer, “ICE Data Indices”). The fund, which is based on the Index, is not issued, sponsored, endorsed, sold or promoted by ICE Data Indices, and ICE Data Indices makes no representation regarding the advisability of investing in such product.
THE FUND IS NOT SPONSORED, ENDORSED, SOLD OR MARKETED BY ICE DATA INDICES OR ITS RESPECTIVE THIRD PARTY SUPPLIERS.
ICE DATA INDICES OR ITS THIRD PARTY SUPPLIERS MAKE NO EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES, AND HEREBY EXPRESSLY DISCLAIM ALL WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR
PURPOSE WITH RESPECT TO THE INDEX OR ANY DATA INCLUDED THEREIN. IN NO EVENT SHALL ICE DATA INDICES HAVE ANY LIABILITY FOR ANY SPECIAL, PUNITIVE, DIRECT, INDIRECT, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES (INCLUDING LOST PROFITS), EVEN IF NOTIFIED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.
IOPV
THE FUND IS NOT SPONSORED, ENDORSED, SOLD OR MARKETED BY ICE DATA INDICES, LLC, OR ITS AFFILIATES (ICE DATA) OR THEIR RESPECTIVE THIRD PARTY SUPPLIERS.
ICE DATA OR ITS THIRD PARTY SUPPLIERS MAKE NO EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES, AND HEREBY EXPRESSLY DISCLAIM ALL WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE WITH RESPECT TO THE IOPVS, ETF STATISTICS, FUND OR ANY FUND DATA INCLUDED THEREIN. IN NO EVENT SHALL ICE DATA HAVE ANY LIABILITY FOR ANY SPECIAL, PUNITIVE, DIRECT, INDIRECT, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES (INCLUDING LOST PROFITS), EVEN IF NOTIFIED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.
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Other information
 
Continuous offering
The method by which creation units are created and traded may raise certain issues under applicable securities laws. Because new creation units are issued and sold by the Trust on an ongoing basis, a “distribution,” as such term is used in the Securities Act, may occur at any point. Broker dealers and other persons are cautioned that some activities on their part may, depending on the circumstances, result in their being deemed participants in a distribution in a manner that could render them statutory underwriters and subject them to the prospectus delivery and liability provisions of the Securities Act.
For example, a broker dealer firm or its client may be deemed a statutory underwriter if it takes creation units after placing an order with the transfer agent for review and approval by the distributor, breaks them down into constituent shares, and sells such shares directly to customers, or if it chooses to couple the creation of a supply of new shares with an active selling effort involving solicitation of secondary market demand for shares. A determination of whether one is an underwriter for purposes of the Securities Act must take into account all the facts and circumstances pertaining to the activities of the broker dealer or its client in the particular case, and the examples mentioned above should not be considered a complete description of all the activities that could lead to a categorization as an underwriter.
Broker dealers who are not “underwriters” but are participating in a distribution (as contrasted to ordinary secondary trading transactions), and thus dealing with shares that are part of an “unsold allotment” within the meaning of Section 4(3)(C) of the Securities Act, would be unable to take advantage of the prospectus delivery exemption provided by Section 4(3) of the Securities Act. This is because the prospectus delivery exemption in Section 4(3) of the Securities Act is not available in respect of such transactions as a result of Section 24(d) of the Investment Company Act. As a result, broker dealer firms should note that dealers who are not underwriters but are participating in a distribution (as contrasted with ordinary secondary market transactions) and thus dealing with the Shares that are part of an overallotment within the meaning of Section 4(3)(A) of the Securities Act would be unable to take advantage of the prospectus delivery exemption provided by Section 4(3) of the Securities Act. Firms that incur a prospectus delivery obligation with respect to shares are reminded that, under Rule 153 of the Securities Act, a prospectus delivery obligation under Section 5(b)(2) of the Securities Act owed to an exchange member in connection with a sale on NYSE Arca is satisfied by the fact that the prospectus is available at NYSE Arca upon request. The prospectus delivery mechanism provided in Rule 153 is only available with respect to transactions on an exchange.
In addition, certain affiliates of the fund and the advisor may purchase and resell fund shares pursuant to this prospectus.
Intraday value
The trading prices of the fund’s shares in the secondary market generally differ from the fund’s daily NAV and are affected by market forces such as the supply of and demand for fund shares and underlying securities held by the fund, economic conditions and other factors. Information regarding the intraday value of the fund’s shares (IOPV) is disseminated
every 15 seconds throughout each trading day by the national securities exchange on which the fund’s shares are listed or by market data vendors or other information providers. The IOPV is based on the current market value of the securities and/or cash required to be deposited in exchange for a creation unit. The IOPV does not necessarily reflect the precise composition of the current portfolio of securities held by the fund at a particular point in time or the best possible valuation of the current portfolio. Therefore, the IOPV should not be viewed as a “real-time” update of the fund’s NAV, which is computed only once a day. The IOPV is generally determined by using current market quotations and/or price quotations obtained from broker-dealers and other market intermediaries that may trade in the portfolio securities held by the fund and valuations based on current market rates. The quotations and/or valuations of certain fund holdings may not be updated during U.S. trading hours if such holdings do not trade in the United States. The fund is not involved in, or responsible for, the calculation or dissemination of the IOPV and makes no warranty as to its accuracy.
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For more information
Two documents are or will be available that offer further information on the fund:
Annual/semiannual reports to shareholders
Additional information about the fund’s investments is available in the fund’s annual and semiannual reports to shareholders. In the fund’s annual report, you will find a discussion of the market conditions and investment strategies that significantly affected the fund’s performance during its last fiscal year.
As of January 1, 2021, paper copies of the fund’s shareholder reports are no longer sent by mail. Instead, the reports are made available on jhinvestments.com/etf, and you will be notified and provided with a link each time a report is posted to the website. You may request to receive paper reports from the fund or from your financial intermediary, free of charge, at any time. You may also request to receive documents through eDelivery.
Statement of Additional Information (SAI)
The SAI contains more detailed information on all aspects of the fund and includes a summary of the fund’s policy regarding disclosure of its portfolio holdings, as well as legal and regulatory matters. A current SAI has been filed with the SEC and is incorporated by reference into (and is legally a part of) this prospectus.
To obtain a free copy of these documents or request other information
There are several ways you can get a current annual/semiannual report, prospectus, or SAI from John Hancock, request other information, or make inquiries:
Online: jhinvestments.com/etf
By mail:
John Hancock Investment Management
200 Berkeley Street
Boston, MA 02116
By phone: 800-225-6020
You can also view or obtain copies of these documents through the SEC:
Online: sec.gov
By email (duplicating fee required): publicinfo@sec.gov
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© 2021 John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund Trust
200 Berkeley Street Boston, MA 02116
800-225-6020, jhinvestments.com
Manulife, Manulife Investment Management, Stylized M Design, and Manulife Investment Management & Stylized M Design are trademarks of The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company and are used by its affiliates under license.
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SEC file number: 811-22733
9400PN 9/1/21