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VOO vs. XLK: What’s The Difference?

The Vanguard S&P 500 ETF (VOO) and the Technology Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLK) are both among the Top 100 ETFs. VOO is a Vanguard Large Blend fund and XLK is a SPDR State Street Global Advisors Technology fund. So, what’s the difference between VOO and XLK? And which fund is better?

The expense ratio of VOO is 0.09 percentage points lower than XLK’s (0.03% vs. 0.12%). VOO also has a lower exposure to the technology sector and a lower standard deviation. Overall, VOO has provided lower returns than XLK over the past ten years.

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

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Summary

VOOXLK
NameVanguard S&P 500 ETFTechnology Select Sector SPDR Fund
CategoryLarge BlendTechnology
IssuerVanguardSPDR State Street Global Advisors
AUM753.41B42.3B
Avg. Return14.45%20.02%
Div. Yield1.34%0.73%
Expense Ratio0.03%0.12%

The Vanguard S&P 500 ETF (VOO) is a Large Blend fund that is issued by Vanguard. It currently has 753.41B total assets under management and has yielded an average annual return of 14.45% over the past 10 years. The fund has a dividend yield of 1.34% with an expense ratio of 0.03%.

The Technology Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLK) is a Technology fund that is issued by SPDR State Street Global Advisors. It currently has 42.3B total assets under management and has yielded an average annual return of 20.02% over the past 10 years. The fund has a dividend yield of 0.73% with an expense ratio of 0.12%.

VOO’s dividend yield is 0.61% higher than that of XLK (1.34% vs. 0.73%). Also, VOO yielded on average 5.58% less per year over the past decade (14.45% vs. 20.02%). The expense ratio of VOO is 0.09 percentage points lower than XLK’s (0.03% vs. 0.12%).

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Fund Composition

Industry Exposure

VOO vs. XLK - Industry Exposure

VOOXLK
Technology24.24%87.54%
Industrials8.86%1.75%
Energy2.84%0.0%
Communication Services11.14%0.0%
Utilities2.43%0.0%
Healthcare13.1%0.0%
Consumer Defensive6.32%0.0%
Real Estate2.58%0.0%
Financial Services14.2%10.71%
Consumer Cyclical12.01%0.0%
Basic Materials2.27%0.0%

The Vanguard S&P 500 ETF (VOO) has the most exposure to the Technology sector at 24.24%. This is followed by Financial Services and Healthcare at 14.2% and 13.1% respectively. Utilities (2.43%), Real Estate (2.58%), and Energy (2.84%) only make up 7.85% of the fund’s total assets.

VOO’s mid-section with moderate exposure is comprised of Consumer Defensive, Industrials, Communication Services, Consumer Cyclical, and Healthcare stocks at 6.32%, 8.86%, 11.14%, 12.01%, and 13.1%.

The Technology Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLK) has the most exposure to the Technology sector at 87.54%. This is followed by Financial Services and Industrials at 10.71% and 1.75% respectively. Consumer Cyclical (0.0%), Real Estate (0.0%), and Consumer Defensive (0.0%) only make up 0.00% of the fund’s total assets.

XLK’s mid-section with moderate exposure is comprised of Healthcare, Utilities, Communication Services, Energy, and Industrials stocks at 0.0%, 0.0%, 0.0%, 0.0%, and 1.75%.

VOO is 63.30% less exposed to the Technology sector than XLK (24.24% vs 87.54%). VOO’s exposure to Financial Services and Healthcare stocks is 3.49% higher and 13.10% higher respectively (14.2% vs. 10.71% and 13.1% vs. 0.0%). In total, Utilities, Real Estate, and Energy also make up 7.85% more of the fund’s holdings compared to XLK (7.85% vs. 0.00%).

Holdings

VOO - Holdings

VOO HoldingsWeight
Apple Inc5.92%
Microsoft Corp5.62%
Amazon.com Inc4.06%
Facebook Inc Class A2.29%
Alphabet Inc Class A2.02%
Alphabet Inc Class C1.97%
Tesla Inc1.44%
Berkshire Hathaway Inc Class B1.44%
NVIDIA Corp1.37%
JPMorgan Chase & Co1.3%

VOO’s Top Holdings are Apple Inc, Microsoft Corp, Amazon.com Inc, Facebook Inc Class A, and Alphabet Inc Class A at 5.92%, 5.62%, 4.06%, 2.29%, and 2.02%.

Alphabet Inc Class C (1.97%), Tesla Inc (1.44%), and Berkshire Hathaway Inc Class B (1.44%) have a slightly smaller but still significant weight. NVIDIA Corp and JPMorgan Chase & Co are also represented in the VOO’s holdings at 1.37% and 1.3%.

XLK - Holdings

XLK HoldingsWeight
Apple Inc21.45%
Microsoft Corp20.37%
NVIDIA Corp4.98%
Visa Inc Class A3.95%
PayPal Holdings Inc3.42%
Mastercard Inc A3.19%
Adobe Inc2.8%
Salesforce.com Inc2.26%
Intel Corp2.26%
Cisco Systems Inc2.23%

XLK’s Top Holdings are Apple Inc, Microsoft Corp, NVIDIA Corp, Visa Inc Class A, and PayPal Holdings Inc at 21.45%, 20.37%, 4.98%, 3.95%, and 3.42%.

Mastercard Inc A (3.19%), Adobe Inc (2.8%), and Salesforce.com Inc (2.26%) have a slightly smaller but still significant weight. Intel Corp and Cisco Systems Inc are also represented in the XLK’s holdings at 2.26% and 2.23%.

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Performance

Annual Returns

VOO vs. XLK - Annual Returns

YearVOOXLK
202018.35%43.67%
201931.46%49.97%
2018-4.42%-1.56%
201721.78%34.27%
201611.93%14.81%
20151.35%5.62%
201413.63%17.75%
201332.33%25.98%
201215.98%15.47%
20112.09%2.69%
20100.0%11.6%

VOO had its best year in 2013 with an annual return of 32.33%. VOO’s worst year over the past decade yielded -4.42% and occurred in 2018. In most years the Vanguard S&P 500 ETF provided moderate returns such as in 2016, 2014, and 2012 where annual returns amounted to 11.93%, 13.63%, and 15.98% respectively.

The year 2019 was the strongest year for XLK, returning 49.97% on an annual basis. The poorest year for XLK in the last ten years was 2018, with a yield of -1.56%. Most years the Technology Select Sector SPDR Fund has given investors modest returns, such as in 2016, 2012, and 2014, when gains were 14.81%, 15.47%, and 17.75% respectively.

Portfolio Growth

VOO vs. XLK - Portfolio Growth

FundInitial BalanceFinal BalanceCAGR
VOO$10,000$36,57514.45%
XLK$10,000$60,74420.02%

A $10,000 investment in VOO would have resulted in a final balance of $36,575. This is a profit of $26,575 over 10 years and amounts to a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.45%.

With a $10,000 investment in XLK, the end total would have been $60,744. This equates to a $50,744 profit over 10 years and a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20.02%.

VOO’s CAGR is 5.58 percentage points lower than that of XLK and as a result, would have yielded $24,169 less on a $10,000 investment. Thus, VOO performed worse than XLK by 5.58% annually.


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