The case for low-cost index fund investing

April 26, 2018


Indexing's popularity among investors has shown few signs of waning. Proven long-term performance, regulatory changes, the introduction of index ETFs, and increased awareness of the benefits of low costs have made indexing a global trend. But is it a trend that will last?

This paper explores the theory behind index fund investing and whether indexing can maintain its levels of success and popularity for the foreseeable future.

Use this paper to:

  • Review the conceptual and theoretical underpinnings of index fund investing.
  • See how the zero-sum game, the effect of costs on returns, and the challenge of persistence help support the case for low-cost index fund investing.
  • Understand the circumstances that may cause an indexing strategy to look more or less appealing in the short term.
Additional materials


  • All investments are subject to risk, including possible loss of principal.
  • Investors cannot invest directly in an index.


Our insights straight
to your inbox

Our insights straight to your inbox

Receive our latest Advisor's Digest
and commentary sent the
first business
morning every week.

A weekly digest of our latest research and commentary. Topics include the economy and markets, portfolio strategy, ETFs, and practice management.

Fund openings/closings, fund manager changes, dividend distributions, webinars, and other events you might want to know about.

Already registered? Log on to
manage your
email subscriptions.