Vanguard target 2040

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3 Best Vanguard Target Retirement Funds

Deciding which mutual funds are appropriate for a retirement portfolio requires a good understanding of investment strategies. Vanguard target-date funds do the work of rebalancing over time so investors don't have to. They start with an allocation favoring stocks in the early years of an investor's life cycle, typically 90% stocks and 10% bonds.

As an investor approaches his retirement age, Vanguard gradually rebalances its asset allocation in favor of less risky securities, such as bonds and short-term reserves. Vanguard target-date funds come with an average expense ratio of 0.10%. The industry average expense ratio for comparable target-date funds is 0.60%. Beginning in February 2015, Vanguard increased the international equity and fixed income allocations for its target-date funds to provide investors with improved global diversification.

The Vanguard Target Retirement 2025 Fund

The Vanguard Target Retirement 2025 Fund has a target date that ranges from 2021 to 2025. Because the fund is very close to its target date, its portfolio has a large number of bond holdings, which tend to be less risky when compared to stocks.

In particular, the fund invests in various Vanguard equity and bond funds, resulting in a 36.30% allocation to domestic stocks, a 24.20% allocation to international stocks, a 27.70% allocation to U.S. corporate and Treasury bonds, and an 11.80% allocation to international bonds. Domestic equity holdings of this fund are broadly diversified across the entire U.S. equity market.

Over the years, the Vanguard Target Retirement 2025 Fund, and Vanguard target-date funds, in general, tend to focus more on higher-quality bonds and Treasury inflation-protected securities (TIPS) compared to other fund families. This approach provides better protection of capital against volatility and real value erosion.

The Vanguard Target Retirement 2025 Fund has a four-star rating from Morningstar and an expense ratio of 0.13%. As the fund gets close to 2025, it plans to have higher asset allocation to bonds, in the realm of 50%. This fund is most appropriate for investors who are highly cost-conscious and plan to retire between 2023 and 2027.

The Vanguard Target Retirement 2040 Fund

The Vanguard Target Retirement 2040 Fund offers a one-stop broadly diversified portfolio with a target date between 2038 and 2042. Like other Vanguard target-date funds, this fund invests in four Vanguard index funds with asset allocations of about 85% in equities and 15% in corporate and sovereign bonds.

About 50.20% of the fund's assets are allocated to domestic equities, while 33% are dedicated to international equities. There is a 12% allocation in U.S. corporate and Treasury bonds and a 4.80% allocation of international bonds. As the fund is nearly 20 years away from its target date, it will continue allocating more assets to risky securities in the next five to 10 years.

The Vanguard Target Retirement 2040 Fund has an expense ratio of 0.14% and it has a four-star rating from Morningstar. Due to Vanguard's larger emphasis on international bonds and international equities, the fund provides broader diversification and better return prospects in the long run, as overseas markets—especially emerging markets—tend to grow faster compared to developed markets.

The Vanguard Target Retirement 2040 Fund is most appropriate for investors whose target retirement is between 2038 and 2042 and would like to invest in one fund and not have to worry about rebalancing until their retirement.

The Vanguard Target Retirement 2055 Fund

The Vanguard Target Retirement 2055 Fund offers lifecycle asset allocation for investors with specific retirement dates. This fund is most attractive for investors who just started their careers and have over 40 years before retirement. As the fund is very far from its target date, 90% of its assets are allocated to domestic and international stocks. The remaining 10% of its assets are split between U.S. and international bonds. The fund is likely to stick to such aggressive allocation until 2030-2035; after that, it will start smoothly adjusting its allocation every year toward bonds.

The Vanguard Target Retirement 2055 Fund has an expense ratio of 0.15% and a four-star rating from Morningstar. This fund is most appropriate for investors who desire automatic asset rebalancing at a low cost and who are not planning to retire until between 2053 and 2057.


NAV / 1-Day Return

48.80  /  0.58 %


Longest Manager Tenure

8.64 years


Target-Date 2040

Investment Style

Large Blend

Credit Quality / Interest Rate Sensitivity

Medium / Moderate


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Vanguard Target Retirement's Fees Dropping in 2022

Analyst Note

| Jason Kephart |

On Sept. 28, 2021, Vanguard announced it will merge the two share classes of its Target Retirement series into one and reduce fees as a result of the new larger asset base. The Malvern-based firm will merge the target-date series’ Institutional share class into its Investor share class, resulting in a single share class that’s expected to have an expense ratio of 0.08%. Currently, the Investor share class has fees that vary from 0.12% to 0.15% depending on the vintage, and the Institutional share class charges 0.09% across all funds. The merger is expected to be completed by February 2022.

The target-date series' Morningstar Analyst Rating of Silver remains unchanged. We will re-evaluate the series once the new fees have officially taken effect.

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Vanguard Target Retirement 2040 Fund;Investor


CategoryMixed-Asset Target 2040
Portfolio StyleGrowth & Income
Fund StatusOpen
Fund InceptionJune 7, 2006

Team Managed

The Fund seeks to provide capital appreciation and current income consistent with its current asset allocation.

Front loadN/A
Deferred loadN/A
Max. redemption feeN/A
Total expense ratio0%
12 b-1N/A
Standard deviation4.44
R. squared0.97
Standard (taxable)$1,000
Fund ReturnCategory1Index (S&P 500)% rank in categoryQuintile rank
  • 1Mixed-Asset Target 2040 Funds
  • 23, 5 and 10 Year Returns are Annualized

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Vanguard Target Retirement 2040 Investor Shares - VFORX

Vanguard Target Retirement 2040 Fund Investor1,2

a. Certain information including, but not limited to, benchmark performance or other performance and/or fee information, is provided by Morningstar, Inc., © 2021 All rights reserved. This information: (1) is proprietary to Morningstar and/or its content providers; (2) may not be copied or distributed; and (3) is not warranted to be accurate, complete or timely. Neither Morningstar nor its content providers are responsible for any damages or losses arising from any use of information. Morningstar is a registered trademark of Morningstar, Inc.

b. The FTSE Global All Cap ex US Index is comprised of large, mid and small cap global stocks, providing coverage of Developed and Emerging Markets, excluding the US.

c. The Bloomberg U.S. Aggregate Bond Index consists of investment-grade U.S. fixed income securities.

d. The Morningstar category average return represents the average return for a category of funds with similar investment objectives and strategies. The average is calculated and funds are assigned to a category by Morningstar.


Target 2040 vanguard

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Vanguard Target Retirement Funds Review 2018

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