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Mutual funds can help lower investing risks

Take some of the anxiety out of investing by letting a mutual fund do a little of the work for you.

Give your money a chance to grow

Investing in mutual funds offers benefits you won't get from trading individual stocks and bonds on your own.

Less risk through more diversification

One mutual fund can invest in hundreds—sometimes thousands—of individual securities at once. So if any one security does poorly, the others are there to help offset that risk.

Lower costs

With a no-load mutual fund, you pay one (hopefully low) expense ratio—instead of racking up the commissions you'd pay when buying and selling individual securities yourself.

Professional management

You don't have to keep track of every security your mutual fund owns. The fund is managed by experts who take care of that for you.


You can buy and sell mutual fund shares online or by phone and set up automatic investments and withdrawals.

Consider your mutual fund options

Choosing which Vanguard mutual funds to invest in can be as simple as picking one fund to do the work of an entire portfolio or as customized as building your portfolio from a variety of fund options.

Once you've selected your funds, it's easy to open your account online.


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No-load mutual fund

A fund that charges no sales fees either on the front end (when you buy fund shares) or back end (when you sell fund shares).

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Expense ratio

A mutual fund's annual operating expenses, expressed as a percentage of the fund's average net assets. It's calculated annually and removed from the fund's earnings before they're distributed to investors, directly reducing investors' returns.

An expense ratio includes management, administrative, marketing, and distribution fees. It doesn't include loads or purchase or redemption fees.