ETFs now manage over $6.44 trillion dollars in assets, making them one of the most important investment vehicles of the modern financial world.
But it wasn’t always that way. As you can see in the illustration below, a lot has changed in the last 30 years.
Even by the beginning of the millennium there were fewer than a hundred funds, most of them small, and major financial firms like Vanguard didn’t even start offering them to their customers until 2001.
Today there are 8,754 funds (and counting), and we’re likely to see that number grow to 10,000 by 2025.
But what are ETFs exactly? Why are they different than other types of funds — especially mutual funds, which they’ve now largely replaced — and why have they become so popular?
In this new episode of Investing-U, our co-founder Nick Hodge and I discuss the difference between mutual funds and ETFs, why ETFs now dominate the investment landscape, and how to use them to your advantage as an investor.
Our conclusion is this: if you learn to use ETFs, you can save money on high broker’s fees and pick the financial goals that are important to you.
We’ll show you how navigate the pitfalls and the opportunities — and why ETFs are one of the best financial innovations to come along in decades.