It tracks the S&P/ASX 300 Index (ASX: XKO), which represents a list of 300 of the biggest businesses on the ASX.
But could it be time to buy the ETF?
Expert thoughts on the VAS ETF
In a recent episode of ‘buy hold sell’ on Livewire, Felicity Thomas from Shaw and Partners and Ben Nash from Pivot Wealth gave their opinion on the VAS ETF.
For Ben Nash, he thought that the Vanguard Australian Shares ETF is a buy because it is “rock solid” and “nice and cheap”.
According to Mr Nash, the VAS ETF offers a good yield and it can provide inflation protection with the “growth element” of the ETF. He concluded that it’s “definitely a buy”.
While the Vanguard Australian Shares ETF may not be far off its all-time high, the “cheap” comment may refer to the fact that the VAS ETF has an annual management fee of 0.10%. This is a fraction of the fee that active fund managers typically charge.
However, Felicity Thomas was less enthusiastic about the ASX-based ETF. She called the VAS ETF a “hold”. Ms Thomas noted that the ASX 300 is trading at 14 times its earnings. However, the VAS ETF share price is “quite high” according to the expert. In her opinion, the Vanguard Australian Shares ETF could be more attractive in a dip like the market saw during January and February 2022.
How is an ETF price affected?
The Vanguard Australian Shares ETF return is dictated by the movement of share prices of the underlying holdings.
So, the bigger holdings like BHP, CBA, CSL, National Australia Bank Ltd. (ASX: NAB), Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC), Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ASX: ANZ), Macquarie Group Ltd (ASX: MQG), Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES) and Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX: TLS) have a larger influence on the returns of the ETF.
The smaller positions are part of the overall picture, but they have a much smaller impact on the price change of the VAS ETF. Names like Estia Health Ltd (ASX: EHE), Mystate Limited (ASX: MYS), Sigma Healthcare Ltd (ASX: SIG), Service Stream Limited (ASX: SSM) and Austal Limited (ASX: ASB) are some of the smallest positions in the portfolio.