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VOO vs VTI: Key Differences and Performance Data (2024)

Updated on Apr 30, 2024
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When investing in indexes, choosing options that offer the right mix of diversification, market exposure, and efficient costs is essential. In this context, two of the most popular ETFs are the VOO (Vanguard S&P 500 ETF) and the VTI (Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF), both offered by the renowned investment manager Vanguard.

Although both ETFs offer low costs and exchange trading, they differ in terms of underlying index composition, levels of diversification, and volatility, making a choice based on the investor’s preferences.

All in all, VOO is an ETF that tracks the S&P 500, while VTI tracks the CRSP US Total Market Index. The first tracks the 500 largest companies in the US, while the second tracks all the US-listed companies.

They have the same costs (TER), and the performance of VOO has been slightly better. VTI has more volatility but offers more diversification because it exposes the investor to the entire US stock market.

In this article, you will find out more about the differences and characteristics of these ETFs so that you can choose the one that best suits your goals and strategy.

VOO vs VTI compared in a nutshell

We have assembled all the information discussed throughout the article in this table so that you can make an informed decision.

 ETF VOO VTI
Index Tracked S&P 500 CRSP US Total Market Index
Fund Manager Vanguard Vanguard
AUM +$420B +$370B
Fund Currency USD USD
Dividend Distribution Distributing Distributing
Expense Ratio (TER) 0.03% 0.03%

Overview

VOO: Vanguard S&P 500 ETF

The Vanguard S&P 500 ETF, VOO, was launched by Vanguard in September 2010. It is an ETF that tracks the performance of the S&P 500, an index composed of the 500 largest US-listed companies. The focus on large-cap companies makes VOO particularly suitable for investors seeking exposure to established and well-known companies within the US market.

VTI: Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF

The Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF, VTI, was introduced by Vanguard to the market in May 2001. VTI is an ETF that tracks the performance of nearly 100% of the U.S. listed companies market.

As one of Vanguard’s flagship funds, VTI has gained popularity and has become one of the largest and most widely held ETFs. Investors are drawn to VTI due to its broad-based approach to market coverage and its ability to provide exposure to the entire U.S. stock market. Keep in mind that approximately 82% of this index overlaps with VOO.

Index tracked

VOO aims to match the performance of the S&P 500 index. VTI, on the other hand, seeks to track the performance of the CRSP US Total Market Index

So, if you are interested in investing in the US stock market, these options allow you to invest either in the 500 largest companies listed on the US stock exchanges (VOO) or the US stock market as a whole (VTI – 3,859 constituents). 

As a result, there may be differences in the composition and weight of each of these companies in the funds, as you can see below.

Top 10 Holdings VOO

Name Weight
APPLE INC 7.10%
MICROSOFT CORP 5.60%
ALPHABET INC CL A 5.10%
AMAZON.COM INC 3.70%
NVIDIA CORP 3.70%
TESLA INC 2.40%
META PLATFORMS INC 1.70%
BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY INC CL B 1.40%
UNITEDHEALTH GROUP INC 1.30%
EXXON MOBIL CORP 1.30%

Source: Vanguard | As of March 30, 2024

Top 10 Holdings VTI

Holdings Weight
APPLE INC 6.10%
MICROSOFT CORP 4.90%
ALPHABET INC 4.20%
AMAZON.COM INC 3.30%
NVIDIA CORP 3.20%
TESLA 2.10%
META PLATFORMS INC 1.50%
BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY INC CL B 1.30%
UNITEDHEALTH GROUP INC 1.20%
EXXON MOBIL CORP 1.10%

Source: Vanguard | As of March 30, 2024

VOO and VTI are physical ETFs because, through full replication, they hold the underlying assets of the S&P 500 and CRSP US Total Market at a similar capitalization weight as the index.

The fund manager

Both ETFs were launched by Vanguard. VTI was launched in 2001, and VOO in 2010.

Distribution

Both ETFs, VOO and VTI, are distributing ETFs, meaning they offer you quarterly dividend payments. This distribution policy could give you the possibility to have constant income from your investment. Still, it is important to know that the dividend yield of the 2 ETFs is low, and if you are not from the United States, you will have to pay a dividend withholding tax which makes it even smaller.

Total Expense Ratio (TER)

A total expense ratio reflects how much an ETF charges you for portfolio management, administration, marketing, and distribution, among other expenses. It is important to note that the expense rate directly affects the return on investment. The higher the expense rate, the lower the net return for investors.

 ETF VOO VTI
TER(%) 0.03 0.03

The TER for both ETFs is the same, at 0.03%.

Fund allocation

As mentioned above, VOO holds the 500 largest U.S. companies, large-cap stocks, while VTI allows exposure to the entire US stock market, including 82% large-cap, 12% mid-cap, and 6% small-cap stocks. Now, it’s easy to understand that since medium and small-cap stocks tend to be more volatile than large-cap stocks, the VTI should be more volatile than the VOO. On the other hand, with these other stocks, VTI comprises 3859 stocks, compared to 505 for VOO; it also offers greater diversification.

Performance

Overall, VOO and VTI provide very similar returns compared to their underlying indexes, but if you want the closest, VTI provides the closest returns compared to its index.

In the table below, you can see their average 1, 3, 5, and 10-year annual returns against the underlying indexes of both ETFs, accurate as of Sep. 30, 2023. Keep in mind that the performance shown is net of expenses.

ETF 1-Year Return 3-Year Return 5-Year Return 10-Year Return
VOO 29.83% 11.42% 15.00% 12.91%
VTI 29.37% 9.62% 14.25% 12.27%
S&P 500 Index 29.88% 11.49% 15.05% 12.96%
CRSP US Total Market Index 29.33% 9.64% 14.25% 12.28%

Source: Vanguard

Source: Koyfin | Get a 20% discount on Koyfin.

Sector diversification

Both the S&P 500 and CRSP US Total Market Index are diversified indexes that hold companies across all eleven GICS sectors, and therefore both ETFs try to replicate their weighting in the underlying indexes, and there are some differences, as you can see below:

Sector allocation VOO

Sectors Weight
Information Technology 29.60%
Financials 13.10%
Health Care 12.40%
Consumer Discretionary 10.30%
Communication Services 8.90%
Industrials 8.80%
Consumer Staples 6.00%
Energy 4.00%
Utilities 2.40%
Materials 2.30%
Real Estate 2.20%

Source: Vanguard | As of March 30, 2024

Sector allocation VTI

Sectors Weight
Technology 32.10%
Consumer Discretionary 14.20%
Industrials 13.10%
Health Care 11.90%
Financials 11.00%
Consumer Staples 4.50%
Energy 4.20%
Real Estate 2.70%
Utilities 2.50%
Telecommunications 1.90%
Basic Materials 1.90%

Source: Vanguard | As of March 30, 2024

VOO and VTI are physical ETFs because, through full replication, they hold the underlying assets of the S&P 500 and CRSP US Total Market at a similar capitalization weight as the index.

Cheapest brokers to invest in VOO and VTI

Now that we’ve gone through the differences between the two ETFs, it’s time to investigate which broker is best to invest in. We have already done that work by analysing the most important features of different ETF brokers and putting together a list of 4 ETF brokers. 

Here you have the list of the 4 ETF brokers and the advantages of each one of them:

  1. eToro: Best for social trading and commission-free investing
  2. Interactive Brokers: Best for the largest ETF offering
  3. Public.com: Best for commission-free investing and access to an investor community
  4. Webull: Best for trading ETFs and access to a wide range of ETF options

Disclaimer: eToro is a multi-asset investment platform. The value of your investments may go up or down. Your capital is at risk. Other fees apply. For more information, visit etoro.com/trading/fees.

Broker ETF fees Minimum Deposit Number of ETFs Regulators
eToro $0 (other fees apply) $50 (varies between countries) 300+ SEC, FINRA, FCA, CySEC, ASIC
Interactive Brokers Free for US investors; Up to USD 0.0035 per stock (min: USD 0.35) for international investors €/$/£0 13,000+ FINRA, SIPC, SEC, CFTC, IIROC, FCA, CBI, AFSL, SFC, SEBI, MAS, MNB
Public.com $0 for US-listed stocks and ETFs during regular market hours; $2.99 per trade during extended hours for non-premium members $0 200+ SEC, FINRA
Webull $0 $100 3,300+ SEC, FINRA, SIPC

Conclusion

In conclusion, when comparing the VOO and VTI, it is evident that both ETFs offer unique benefits to investors. 

VOO has slightly better historical performance, while VTI provides greater diversification by covering the entire US stock market. 

Ultimately, the choice between VOO and VTI will depend on the investor’s personal preferences, investment objectives and trading strategies. Especially in this case, it is essential to consider factors such as risk tolerance, investment horizon and diversification preferences when making an informed decision.

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About the author
Minho Investment Association
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The Minho Investment Association (MIA) is a junior initiative from the University of Minho (Portugal), which aims to promote financial literacy among young people.

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