This ETF's diversified portfolio and rock-bottom fee make it stand out.
The case for index investing rests on the index fund's cost advantage and how representative it is of its actively managed peers, not market efficiency.
And they do so without more risk, relative to international large-cap funds.
Vanguard uses this fund in its target-date and LifeStrategy funds.
Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-US Small-Cap provides exposure to both developed- and emerging-markets small caps, while WisdomTree offers a dividend-focused ETF and a currency-hedged ETF.
Passively managed funds are a viable option thanks to low fees.
The largest fund affected is Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets ETF, whose fee is falling by 17%.
Although a cap-weighted strategy is low-cost, it does make large bets in risky areas.
Some readers carve out specialized emerging-markets stakes, while others are content with the indirect route.
Foreign-stock funds and dividend-payers are top destinations for new IRA contributions.