Skip to content

MBB vs. VHT: What’s The Difference?

The iShares MBS ETF (MBB) and the Vanguard Health Care Index Fund ETF Shares (VHT) are both among the Top 100 ETFs. MBB is a iShares Intermediate Government fund and VHT is a Vanguard Health fund. So, what’s the difference between MBB and VHT? And which fund is better?

The expense ratio of MBB is 0.04 percentage points lower than VHT’s (0.06% vs. 0.1%). MBB is mostly comprised of AAA bonds while VHT has a high exposure to the healthcare sector. Overall, MBB has provided lower returns than VHT over the past 11 years.

In this article, we’ll compare MBB vs. VHT. We’ll look at annual returns and performance, as well as at their industry exposure and holdings. Moreover, I’ll also discuss MBB’s and VHT’s fund composition, risk metrics, and portfolio growth and examine how these affect their overall returns.

TIP: Keep track of all your investments with Personal Capital. I use this amazing tool to aggregate all investments in one place and make sure I'm on track to financial freedom. Oh, and did I mention it's free? Try it out here (link to Personal Capital).

Summary

MBBVHT
NameiShares MBS ETFVanguard Health Care Index Fund ETF Shares
CategoryIntermediate GovernmentHealth
IssueriSharesVanguard
AUM25.69B17.94B
Avg. Return3.08%16.04%
Div. Yield1.88%1.15%
Expense Ratio0.06%0.1%

The iShares MBS ETF (MBB) is a Intermediate Government fund that is issued by iShares. It currently has 25.69B total assets under management and has yielded an average annual return of 3.08% over the past 10 years. The fund has a dividend yield of 1.88% with an expense ratio of 0.06%.

The Vanguard Health Care Index Fund ETF Shares (VHT) is a Health fund that is issued by Vanguard. It currently has 17.94B total assets under management and has yielded an average annual return of 16.04% over the past 10 years. The fund has a dividend yield of 1.15% with an expense ratio of 0.1%.

MBB’s dividend yield is 0.73% higher than that of VHT (1.88% vs. 1.15%). Also, MBB yielded on average 12.96% less per year over the past decade (3.08% vs. 16.04%). The expense ratio of MBB is 0.04 percentage points lower than VHT’s (0.06% vs. 0.1%).

FYI: The best way I've found to invest in ETFs is through M1 Finance. It's free and you even get an instant line of credit! Have a look here (link to M1 Finance).

Fund Composition

Holdings

MBB - Holdings

MBB Bond SectorsWeight
AAA99.51%
Others0.49%
Below B0.0%
B0.0%
BB0.0%
BBB0.0%
A0.0%
AA0.0%
US Government0.0%

MBB’s Top Bond Sectors are ratings of AAA, Others, Below B, B, and BB at 99.51%, 0.49%, 0.0%, 0.0%, and 0.0%. The fund is less weighted towards BBB (0.0%), A (0.0%), and AA (0.0%) rated bonds.

VHT - Holdings

VHT HoldingsWeight
Johnson & Johnson7.34%
UnitedHealth Group Inc6.44%
Pfizer Inc3.7%
Abbott Laboratories3.48%
Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc3.37%
AbbVie Inc3.37%
Merck & Co Inc3.33%
Eli Lilly and Co3.17%
Danaher Corp2.91%
Medtronic PLC2.83%

VHT’s Top Holdings are Johnson & Johnson, UnitedHealth Group Inc, Pfizer Inc, Abbott Laboratories, and Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc at 7.34%, 6.44%, 3.7%, 3.48%, and 3.37%.

AbbVie Inc (3.37%), Merck & Co Inc (3.33%), and Eli Lilly and Co (3.17%) have a slightly smaller but still significant weight. Danaher Corp and Medtronic PLC are also represented in the VHT’s holdings at 2.91% and 2.83%.

NOTE: The easiest way to add diversification to your portfolio is to invest in real estate through Fundrise. You can become private real estate investor without the burden of property management! Check it out here (link to Fundrise).

Risk Analysis

MBBVHT
Mean Return0.21.33
R-squared74.3859.86
Std. Deviation2.1213.58
Alpha0.147.99
Beta0.60.75
Sharpe Ratio0.871.13
Treynor Ratio3.0220.74

The iShares MBS ETF (MBB) has a Standard Deviation of 2.12 with a Alpha of 0.14 and a Sharpe Ratio of 0.87. Its Treynor Ratio is 3.02 while MBB’s Mean Return is 0.2. Furthermore, the fund has a Beta of 0.6 and a R-squared of 74.38.

The Vanguard Health Care Index Fund ETF Shares (VHT) has a Alpha of 7.99 with a Treynor Ratio of 20.74 and a Beta of 0.75. Its R-squared is 59.86 while VHT’s Mean Return is 1.33. Furthermore, the fund has a Standard Deviation of 13.58 and a Sharpe Ratio of 1.13.

MBB’s Mean Return is 1.13 points lower than that of VHT and its R-squared is 14.52 points higher. With a Standard Deviation of 2.12, MBB is slightly less volatile than VHT. The Alpha and Beta of MBB are 7.85 points lower and 0.15 points lower than VHT’s Alpha and Beta.

FYI: Another great way to get exposure to the real estate sector is by investing in real estate debt. Groundfloor offers fantastic short-term, high-yield bonds that can add diversification to your portfolio!

Performance

Annual Returns

MBB vs. VHT - Annual Returns

YearMBBVHT
20204.03%18.21%
20196.27%21.97%
20180.81%5.55%
20172.37%23.34%
20161.28%-3.33%
20151.28%7.22%
20146.16%25.38%
2013-1.92%42.67%
20122.23%19.1%
20115.88%10.57%
20105.44%5.75%

MBB had its best year in 2019 with an annual return of 6.27%. MBB’s worst year over the past decade yielded -1.92% and occurred in 2013. In most years the iShares MBS ETF provided moderate returns such as in 2012, 2017, and 2020 where annual returns amounted to 2.23%, 2.37%, and 4.03% respectively.

The year 2013 was the strongest year for VHT, returning 42.67% on an annual basis. The poorest year for VHT in the last ten years was 2016, with a yield of -3.33%. Most years the Vanguard Health Care Index Fund ETF Shares has given investors modest returns, such as in 2011, 2020, and 2012, when gains were 10.57%, 18.21%, and 19.1% respectively.

Portfolio Growth

MBB vs. VHT - Portfolio Growth

FundInitial BalanceFinal BalanceCAGR
MBB$10,000$13,9063.08%
VHT$10,000$48,46416.04%

A $10,000 investment in MBB would have resulted in a final balance of $13,906. This is a profit of $3,906 over 11 years and amounts to a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.08%.

With a $10,000 investment in VHT, the end total would have been $48,464. This equates to a $38,464 profit over 11 years and a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.04%.

MBB’s CAGR is 12.96 percentage points lower than that of VHT and as a result, would have yielded $34,558 less on a $10,000 investment. Thus, MBB performed worse than VHT by 12.96% annually.


Current recommendations:

Over the past years, I have discovered several tools and products that have helped me tremendously on my path to financial freedom:

P.S.: The links below are affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you when you sign up for one of the services. Thank you for your support!

1)Personal Capital is simply the best tool out there to track your net worth and plan for financial freedom. Just their retirement planner alone has become an invaluable tool to keep myself on track financially. Try it out, it's free!

2) Take a look at M1 Finance, my favorite broker. I love how easy it is to invest and maintain my portfolio with them. I can set up automatic transfers, rebalance my portfolio with one click and even borrow up to 35% of my assets at super low interest rates!

3) Fundrise is by far the best way I've found to invest in Real Estate. You can diversify your portfolio by investing in their eREITs or even allocate capital to individual properties (without the hassle of managing tenants!).

4) Groundfloor is another great way to get exposure to the real estate sector by investing in short-term, high-yield real estate debt. Current returns are >10% and you can get started with just $10.

5) If you are interested in startup investing, check out Mainvest. I've started allocating a small amount of assets to invest in and support small businesses. Return targets are between 10-25% and you can start with just $100!

To see all of my most up-to-date recommendations, check out the Recommended Tools section.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *