Exchange traded funds have made gaining core equity exposure more accessible and cost-efficient for scores of investors. Investors can choose from an array of low-fee, broad market ETFs tracking a variety of indexes in an effort to gain exposure to hundreds or even thousands of stocks under one umbrella.

Vanguard, the second-largest U.S. ETF issuer, has several notable broad market ETFs, including the t Vanguard Total Stock Market Index ETF (NYSEArca: VTI), Vanguard Total International Stock ETF (NYSEArca: VXUS) and Vanguard Total Bond Market ETF (NYSEArca: BND). VTI features large-, mid- and small-cap U.S. stocks.

VTI comes with a 0.05% expense ratio and covers almost every  listed U.S. stock. VTI tracks the CRSP U.S. Total Market Index, which includes almost every liquid U.S. stock on the market. VTI offers a notable alternative to standard S&P 500 index funds at a time when equities are perking up.

“VTI owns a basket of 3,592 publicly traded securities across the large, mid, and small-cap verticals. You can’t get much more diversified than that. The fund is market-cap weighted to give the largest stocks a greater share of its $70 billion asset base. Nevertheless, the top holding, Apple Inc (AAPL) only accounts for 2.5% of the total portfolio. That leaves a large swath of exposure to be distributed through the thousands of remaining holdings,” according to ETF Daily News.

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