Tom MacWright

The S&P 500 is largely a historical artifact

I see the S&P 500 referenced pretty frequently as an vanilla index for people investing. This isn’t totally wrong, which is why this post is short. But, if you have the goal of just “investing in the market,” there’s a better option for doing that: a total market index. For Vanguard, instead of VOO, it’d be VTI. For Schwab, it’s SCHB. Virtually every provider has an option. For background, here’s Jack Bogle discussing the topic.

The S&P 500 is not a quantitative index of the top 500 companies: it has both selection criteria and a committee that takes a role in selection. In contrast, total market indices are typically fully passive and quantitative, and they own more than 500 companies.

So if you want to “own the market,” you can just do that. Not investment advice.