Own VAS shares? Here’s how this ETF performed in 2021

How did the ASX’s top ETF perform over 2021?
The post Own VAS shares? Here’s how this ETF performed in 2021 appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia. –

Although the ASX welcomed a plethora of new exchange-traded funds (ETFs) to the public markets last year, the Vanguard Australian Shares Index ETF (ASX: VAS) retained its top spot as ASX investors’ favourite ETF. With roughly $10 billion in assets under management, it seems Aussie investors can’t get enough of this relatively simple index fund.

But does VAS have the numbers to back up this popularity? Let’s check out how this ETF performed last year.

So VAS is a rather unique ETF in that it tracks the S&P/ASX 300 Index (ASX: XKO). While most ASX index funds stick with the conventional S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO), VAS throws in an extra hundred companies from the bottom end of the market. That means that you’ll still find ASX blue chip stalwarts like Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX: CBA)Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX: WOW), and Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX: TLS) in this ETF. But you’ll also get companies like Life360 Inc (ASX: 360) and Sezzle Inc (ASX: SZL) that are excluded from the ASX 200.

How did VAS navigate 2021?

So how did VAS perform last year? Well, this ETF started the year at $84.56 a unit, and ended up at $95.95 by New Year’s Eve last week. That’s an on-paper capital gain of 13.38%. Not bad, one could say. But add VAS’s four dividend distributions that investors enjoyed over last year, and that return gets boosted by a rough 3.3% (plus a bit extra on the top with franking).

That compares well against the ASX 200 Index. It recorded a gain of 13% for the calendar year last year.

Since CBA is VAS’s single largest holding, this ASX bank’s hefty 23% gain over 2021 would have helped drive these returns. Other blue chips that enjoyed healthy gains in 2021 that also would have lent a hand include Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX: TLS), up 40%, and Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX: WOW), up 14%. The main detractors would have been BHP Group Ltd (ASX: BHP) and Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO), which both went backwards over the year that was.

The Vanguard Australian Shares Index ETF charges a management fee of 0.1% per annum (or $10 a year for every $10,000 invested).

The post Own VAS shares? Here’s how this ETF performed in 2021 appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia.

Should you invest $1,000 in VAS right now?

Before you consider VAS, you’ll want to hear this.

Motley Fool Investing expert Scott Phillips just revealed what he believes are the 5 best stocks for investors to buy right now… and VAS wasn’t one of them.

The online investing service he’s run for nearly a decade, Motley Fool Share Advisor, has provided thousands of paying members with stock picks that have doubled, tripled or even more.* And right now, Scott thinks there are 5 stocks that are better buys.

*Returns as of August 16th 2021

More reading

Here are the top 10 ASX shares today

Here’s what brokers are saying about the Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) share price

These 3 ASX 200 shares are topping the volume charts this Tuesday

Woolworths (ASX:WOW) share price shrugs off COVID-induced supply issues

Here’s why the CBA share price had such a good run in December

Motley Fool contributor Sebastian Bowen owns Telstra Corporation Limited. The Motley Fool Australia’s parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns and has recommended Life360, Inc. The Motley Fool Australia owns and has recommended Telstra Corporation Limited. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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