VT: The Total World Stock ETF Heats Up

In recent months, investors have turned bullish about VT.

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Reviewed by: James Rubin
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Edited by: Lou Carlozo

The Vanguard Total World Stock ETF product (VT) owns shares in developed and emerging market stocks. VT is a highly liquid product with about $31.5 billion in assets under management. VT trades an average of more than two million shares daily, charging only a 0.07% management fee. While VT’s holdings include small allocations in plenty of foreign companies, its most significant holdings are in U.S. multinational firms. 

 VT Chart 1Source: etf.com 

The chart highlights that VT’s top 10 holdings are U.S. companies with significant international business and revenue flows.  

Over the past month investors have turned positive, with funds flowing into VT. While there is exposure to foreign companies, VT excludes countries such as Vietnam and Kuwait as they have “minimal impact on the fund’s ability to track the global market.” The increased interest in VT in late December 2023 and early January 2024 is a sign that investors want to diversify exposure to companies with substantial international footprints.  

VT underperformed the SPY and QQQ in 2023 

In 2023, the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) rose 24.6%. The Invesco QQQ Trust (QQQ), which follows the tech-heavy NASDAQ, did even better – posting a 54.5% gain.  

VT Chart 2

The three-year chart shows VT’s rise of 19.4% from $86.19 at the end of 2022 to $102.88 at the end of 2023, impressive yet still lagging behind SPY and QQQ. 

Funds flows over the past weeks were positive 

Fund flows could tell us that investors in search of value opportunities in 2024 have put VT on their radar.  

VT Chart 3Source: etf.com 

The chart shows that in a little more than one month (Dec. 1, 2023 to Jan. 2, 2024) more than $618 million has flowed into VT. VT’s bullish trend has caused buying to emerge in a product that slightly underperformed SPY in 2023.  

A bullish trend since October 2022 

VT shares rallied after reaching an $88.37 per share low on October 27, 2023.  

VT Chart 4

Andrew Hecht is a Nevada-based writer and analyst covering stocks, bonds, foreign exchange, cryptocurrency and raw material markets. He has over four decades of experience in markets across all asset classes, concentrating on commodity markets. Hecht was a senior trader at Salomon Brothers in the 1980s and 1990s, running sales and trading businesses. In 2013, McGraw Hill published his book, “How to Make Money in Commodities."