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For the second time in as many weeks, Vanguard has launched a wave of broad market style box ETFs aimed at unseating its largest rivals. Vanguard declared war in its fight for ETF supremacy two weeks ago by targeting SPDRs and iShares with the launch of nine ETFs covering the S&P index style boxes. Today's announcement consists of seven new ETFs squarely aimed at the Russell-indexed ETFs from BlackRock's iShares that have been on the market for more than 10 years.

Once again, Vanguard has chosen not to try to differentiate its products based on unique investment strategies, new indexes or being first to market. Instead, it is challenging the competition head-on and differentiating its offerings by price and brand name. Vanguard has wisely chosen to draw the battle lines where it has an advantage.

Vanguard Russell 1000 ETF

has an expense ratio of 0.12% and will compete directly with

iShares Russell 1000

(IWB) - Get iShares Russell 1000 ETF Report

, which has a 0.15% expense ratio and is the third-largest ETF in the large-cap blend category behind

SPDR S&P 500

(SPY) - Get SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust Report

and

iShares S&P 500

(IVV) - Get iShares Core S&P 500 ETF Report

.

Vanguard Russell 1000 Growth ETF

has an expense ratio of 0.15% and will compete directly with

iShares Russell 1000 Growth

TheStreet Recommends

(IWF) - Get iShares Russell 1000 Growth ETF Report

, which has a 0.20% expense ratio and is the second-largest ETF in the large-cap growth category behind

PowerShares QQQ

(QQQQ)

.

Vanguard Russell 1000 Value ETF

has an expense ratio of 0.15% and will compete directly with

iShares Russell 1000 Value

(IWD) - Get iShares Russell 1000 Value ETF Report

, which has a 0.20% expense ratio and is the current asset leader in the large-cap value category.

Vanguard Russell 2000 ETF

has an expense ratio of 0.15% and will compete directly with

iShares Russell 2000

(IWM) - Get iShares Russell 2000 ETF Report

, which has a 0.20% expense ratio and is the asset leader in the small-cap blend category.

Vanguard Russell 2000 Growth ETF

has an expense ratio of 0.20% and will compete directly with

iShares Russell 2000 Growth

(IWO) - Get iShares Russell 2000 Growth ETF Report

, which has a 0.25% expense ratio and is the asset leader in the small-cap growth category.

Vanguard Russell 2000 Value ETF

has an expense ratio of 0.20% and will compete directly with

iShares Russell 2000 Value

(IWN) - Get iShares Russell 2000 Value ETF Report

, which has a 0.25% expense ratio and is the asset leader in the small-cap value category.

Vanguard Russell 3000 ETF

has an expense ratio of 0.15% and will compete directly with

iShares Russell 3000

(IWV) - Get iShares Russell 3000 ETF Report

, which has a 0.20% expense ratio and is the second-largest ETF in the total U.S. market category behind

Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF

(VTI) - Get Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF Report

.

Russell style-box indexes tend to be favored over similar indexes from S&P by ETF investors seeking to control style-box allocations within their portfolios. As a result, the existing iShares Russell ETFs are the asset leaders in most of these categories, with combined assets for the seven ETFs currently around $45 billion.

Vanguard chose to not bring the all-cap Russell 3000 Growth and Russell 3000 Value ETFs to market. Their reasoning was not declared, but I would suspect the relatively low assets of less than $300 million each in

iShares Russell 3000 Growth

(IWZ)

and

iShares Russell 3000 Value

(IWW)

is the primary factor.

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At the time of publication Ron Rowland was long IVV and had no positions in any of companies or ETF sponsors mentioned, and receives no income, revenue or other compensation (either directly or indirectly) from, or on behalf of, any of the companies or ETF sponsors mentioned. Rowland is the founder and president of Capital Cities Asset Management, a fee-based registered investment adviser in Austin, Texas. He is also the founder and publisher of Invest With An Edge and All Star Investor, where he has been providing market commentary and active investment advice since 1991. Opinions expressed in this article should not be considered personal recommendations to buy or sell any security.