Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSEARCA: WMT) has established itself as one of the leading worldwide discount retail and e-commerce companies. As of the end of Wal-Mart's fiscal year in 2017, it has generated total revenues of $485.8 billion, which is .8% greater than its net sales in 2016. Wal-Mart ranked at the top of the 2017 Fortune 500 list of world's largest companies by revenue. Since Wal-Mart is a blue-chip stock, it is considered a safe haven for investors.
Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund Investor Shares (VTSMX)
The Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund Investor Shares was issued on April 27, 1992, with the sponsorship of Vanguard. As of Feb 26, 2018, the Vanguard Equity Investment group manages the fund's portfolio of 3,816 stocks with total net assets of $701.1 billion. VTSMX charges an expense ratio of 0.15%. VTSMX seeks to track the performance of the CRSP U.S. Total Market Index, its benchmark index, by implementing a representative sampling indexing strategy. VTSMX's benchmark index represents 100% of the investable U.S. equities market, which includes micro-, small-, mid- and large-cap stocks traded on the NYSEARCA or the NASDAQ exchange.
Although WMT is not included in VTSMX's top 10 holdings, the fund holds over 36 million shares of Wal-Mart, which is 1.22% of the stock's total shares. As of Feb 26, 2018, VTSMX's position in WMT had a market value of over $2.6 billion, which accounted for 0.55% of its portfolio. VTSMX offers low-cost exposure to the U.S. broad stock market with a moderate degree of volatility.
Vanguard 500 Index Fund Investors Shares (VFINX)
The Vanguard 500 Index Fund Investors Shares was issued on Aug. 31, 1976, by Vanguard. VFINX is advised by the Vanguard Equity Investment Group and charges a low net expense ratio of 0.14%. The fund seeks to provide investment results corresponding to the performance of the S&P 500 Index, its benchmark index, by employing an indexing strategy. VFINX holds a portfolio of 507 stocks with total net assets of $421.1 billion.
The fund's top holdings include Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook, and JP Morgan Chase. VFINX is a major shareholder of WMT and holds 25.4 million shares of its common stock. Due to the fund's exposure to the U.S. broad equity market, VFINX's position in WMT only accounts for 0.64% of its portfolio. Since VFINX has a well-diversified portfolio of large-cap stocks, moderately risk-tolerant investors may consider it as a core equity holding.
SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY)
The SPDR S&P 500 ETF tracks the S&P 500 index, and the first shares were released January 22, 1993 by State Street. SPY was the first US-based ETF (Exchange Traded Fund) and set off a finance revolution in the mid-90s. The ETF market is now, by State Street's estimate, worth over $4.75 trillion. SPY has an ultra-low expense ratio of 0.09%, total assets of $274.6 billion, and an average volume of $76.9 million
SPY's top holdings are similar to VFINX, and include Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, and Facebook. The fund has 17 million Wal-Mart shares, which amounts to around 0.50% of all Wal-Mart's outgoing assets.