Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) should stick to the tactics that made them so successful in the first place, according to MotleyFool columnist and Certified Financial Planner Buz Livingston.

In the beginning, these passively managed, index-tracking baskets offered investors the advantage of low expense ratios, and protection again pitfalls that face mutual funds—such as market timing—because they trade like stocks, rather than just once daily. The Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF, for example, boasted an annual expense ratio of 0.07%, compared to 1.5% for the average mutual fund.

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