The Vanguard Extended Market Index fund will be the second fund to offer Vanguard's share class known as VIPERs (for Vanguard Index Participation Equity Receipts) and the only exchange-traded fund to track the Wilshire 4500 Completion Index. The Wilshire 4500 Completion Index tracks small- and mid-cap stocks and tracks all of the stocks in the Wilshire 5000 Index, excluding S&P 500 Index stocks.
Vanguard launched its VIPER share class on its Total Stock Market Index Fund May 31. It will make the Extended Market Index VIPER shares available to investors upon SEC approval of its amendment to the fund's registration statement, the company said.
The new VIPER share class is designed to draw short-term traders out of Vanguard funds conventional share classes by offering intraday trading.
Vanguard's launch of VIPER shares follows a lengthy delay in its efforts to develop an exchange-traded share class. The delay was the result of a legal battle between Vanguard and McGraw-Hill Companies over the use of the Standard and Poor's trademark in connection with VIPERs. A U.S. District Court ruled in favor of S&P, a subsidiary of McGraw-Hill, successfully blocking Vanguard from attaching VIPERs to its S&P 500 Index fund. Vanguard has said it will appeal the decision.