The Dow Jones Wilshire 5000 (DWCFT) aims to represent the entire U.S. market of equities that are readily priced. It contains more than 5,000 stocks and so is the most comprehensive stock index intended as a benchmark for the entire U.S. market.
The Wilshire 5000, known offically as the Dow Jones Wilshire 5000 Composite Total Return Index, was created in 1974 by Wilshire Associates (now part of Dow Jones) and consisted then of just under 5,000 equities. It has since been used to create a family of sub-indexes that measure the performance of large-cap, medium-cap, small-cap and micro-cap stocks. The Wilshire competes as a comprehensive U.S. market index with the Russell 3000 Index and the MSCI Broad Market Index.
With 6,700 stocks currently the Wilshire 5000 is the broadest-based U.S. market index, although its top 10 components comprise more than 17 percent of its total value. As of Dec. 31, 2007 the technology sector contributed 29 percent of the index's value, followed by 25 percent consumer non-durables and 14 percent finance.
Trading the Index
Asset manager State Street Global Advisors manages an exchange-traded fund (ETF) - SPDR DJ Wilshire Total Market ETF (TMW) - that trades on the American Stock Exchange (AMEX). The fund aims to track the weighting and returns of the Wilshire 5000 Index. As of May 2008 the TMW's net assets totaled over $138 billion at a price of $102. The fund's largest holding was ExxonMobil with 3.28 percent followed by General Electric with 2.13 percent and Microsoft at 1.69 percent.