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See the difference low-cost funds can make

The less you pay for your funds, the more you keep in your pocket—it's that simple.

Vanguard funds offer an enviable cost advantage

The average Vanguard mutual fund and ETF (exchange-traded fund) expense ratio is 83% less than the industry average.*

You don't get a bill explaining how much of your savings went toward paying fund expenses, because those costs are paid directly out of each fund's returns.

Vanguard was built differently to make sure we stay focused on keeping your costs low.

Expense ratios affect your bottom line

See the potential impact Vanguard's low-cost funds can have on your savings over time compared with the industry average. Your savings have the potential to grow even more when you're invested for longer periods of time.

All examples assume an initial investment of $50,000 earning 6% each year.

At Vanguard you could save $7,527 over 10 years based on Vanguard's average expense ratio of 0.19%, which results in a cost of $1,687 in this scenario, compared with the industry average expense ratio of 1.08%, which results in a cost of $9,214.

Over 20 years, you could save $25,318 based on costs of $5,985 at Vanguard compared with $31,303 at the industry average. Stay invested for 30 years and you could save $63,915 based on costs of $15,926 at Vanguard compared with $79,841 at the industry average.

If the rate of return were altered, results would vary from the hypothetical examples provided. The final balances described are after costs. These examples do not represent any particular investment and do not account for inflation. There may be other material differences between investment products that must be considered prior to investing.

All averages are asset-weighted. Industry averages exclude Vanguard. Sources: Vanguard and Morningstar, Inc., as of December 31, 2020.

Other ways we keep your costs low

There are no trading commissions when you buy and sell Vanguard low-cost mutual funds or ETFs.**

If you decide to invest in individual stocks, bonds, or CDs (certificates of deposit) or in other companies' mutual funds or ETFs, you may pay a brokerage commission—but we keep those low too.

Plus, for as long as you keep investing at Vanguard, you'll pay no account service fees.†

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Front-end load

A sales fee that's charged when you buy fund shares. The fee can be as high as 8.5% of your purchase amount—which would reduce a $100,000 investment to $91,500.

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Back-end load

A sales fee that's charged when you sell fund shares. The fee can start as high as 5% to 7% but typically decline each year you're invested in the fund, ultimately disappearing after 5 to 10 years.

This may also be referred to as a "contingent deferred sales charge."