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Investment Profile

Investment Profile: Stay in Touch


AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Spring, Vonage, and more

Managed by

Ticker: VOX

Risk Level


Risk Level


We just can’t get enough of our mobile devices. And maybe it borders on obsession sometimes, but our fixation on these little glowing screens means big business for telecom players. America’s digital mobile usage grew over 800% from 2008 to 2015, and most experts don’t see an end in sight. If you also think that the mobile revolution is here to stay, you might want to consider Stay in Touch.

What’s this investment all about?

Stay in Touch is an exchange-traded fund, or ETF, called Vanguard Telecommunication Services ETF (VOX). Companies in this fund provide technology that brings us closer to friends and family, entertains and enriches our lives, and connects us to the world—all with the touch of a finger or a simple voice command. The telecom industry is the backbone of the IoT (aka the Internet of Things) The IoT includes wearables, smartphones, smart cars, smart homes, and maybe eventually smart cities. To power all of these smart things we’ll need the network connectivity provided by the telecom companies in this ETF.

What companies does this investment include?

Stay in Touch includes 30 companies in the telecom industry. AT&T is mobilizing our world, with over 134 million wireless customers in the US and Mexico. Can you hear me now? Verizon is the nation’s leading mobile carrier and generated over 131 billion in revenue in 2015. These two mobile kings make up about half of the fund’s assets. If you have a mobile phone, fixed telephone (yes, actual people still use landlines), or broadband service, chances are you will find your provider in this fund.

Who is this investment for?

If you think it’s only a matter of time before we implant wireless devices in our heads, Stay in Touch may be for you. It’s hard to ignore the facts. The Millennial generation now spends 90 hours per month on their mobile devices—that’s a mind blowing 45 full days a year. As amazing as this investment sounds, be aware that diversification is not among its greatest qualities. Two large telecoms comprise nearly half of the investment so make sure that you own at least one other, more diversified investment to lower your overall risk.

Recommended read: Diversification: How To Choose Investments When You Can’t Predict The Future

Why did it make the cut on Stash?

Telecom companies tend to be safer equity investments with more reliable business models, more stable cash flows, and often have delicious dividend payouts. Stay in Touch comes with an expense ratio of 0.10%, which is very low when compared with other ETFs.

What are some other Stash investments like this?

If you want to invest in industries and companies you believe in, consider these other Stash investments:

By Stash Team

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