These 26 funds are the lowest in cost for positions held three months. 


Funds holding foreign securities haven’t done terribly well in recent years, but if you want to bet on a reversal of fortune, the exchange-traded funds in this table are the cheap way to do it. You can hold a $10,000 position in any of them for three months at a cost of $10 or less. The best operators get your cost down to $2.

Costs reflect bid/ask spreads, expense ratios charged by the fund vendor and any offsets to those expenses from securities lending revenue.

3-month Holding Cost*
Liquidity Score
Ticker Exchange-traded fund
VEA Vanguard FTSE Developed Markets $2.05 A
IEFA iShares Core MSCI EAFE 2.46 A+
VSS Vanguard FTSE All-Wld ex-US SmCp 2.51 B
VEU Vanguard FTSE All-Wld ex-US 3.40 A
SPDW SPDR Portfolio World ex-US 3.68 A
SCHF Schwab International Equity 3.96 A
VT Vanguard Total World Stock 4.04 A
IXUS iShares Core MSCI Total Intl Stk 4.60 A
VXUS Vanguard Total International Stock 5.40 A
SCZ iShares MSCI EAFE Small-Cap 5.85 A
EFAV iShares Edge MSCI Min Vol EAFE 7.62 A
ACWI iShares MSCI ACWI 8.94 A+
SCHC Schwab International Small-Cap Eq 8.95 B
IDEV iShares Core MSCI Intl Dev Mkts 8.96 B
EFA iShares MSCI EAFE 9.17 A+
VGK Vanguard FTSE Europe 2.00 A+
VPL Vanguard FTSE Pacific 3.89 A
IEUR iShares Core MSCI Europe 5.16 A
FEZ SPDR EURO Stoxx 50 8.48 A
IEMG iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets 1.92 A+
VWO Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets 4.62 A
SCHE Schwab Emerging Markets Equity 6.76 A
SPEM SPDR Portfolio Emerging Markets 9.20 B
BNDX Vanguard Total International Bond 4.64 A
VNQI Vanguard Global ex-US Real Est 5.95 A
THD iShares MSCI Thailand Capped 8.81 A

*Cost of a $10,000 position held for three months. Reflects bid/ask spread, expense ratio and cost offset from securities lending.

Data sources: Morningstar, Bloomberg, fund distributors

Over longer holding periods, different ETFs rise to the top in cost efficiency. To see rankings for ten-year investments, see Best ETFs for Investors 2018.

For links to the three-month scores in different categories, see Best ETFs for Trading.

Originally published at Forbes

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