5 min read
By Ron Koren, ETF Insider


In the world of finance, ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds) have become a popular investment vehicle for both retail and institutional investors. Among the plethora of ETFs available, two have garnered significant attention: ARKK and XLK. Both funds focus on the technology sector, but they have distinct differences in their approach and holdings. This article will delve into the intricacies of ARKK vs XLK, providing investors with a comprehensive understanding of their features.

ARKK VS XLK: Sectors and Top Holdings

ARKK, managed by ARK Invest, is known for its active management strategy. It primarily focuses on disruptive innovation across various sectors, including genomics, fintech, and artificial intelligence. Some of its top holdings include companies like Tesla, Square, and Roku, which are seen as game-changers in their respective industries.
On the other hand, XLK is an ETF managed by State Street Global Advisors and tracks the Technology Select Sector Index. This fund provides exposure to the technology sector of the S&P 500. Its top holdings are more traditional tech giants like Apple, Microsoft, and Visa. When comparing ARKK vs XLK in terms of sectors and top holdings, one can observe that while ARKK bets on future disruptors, XLK leans towards established tech behemoths.


ARKK VS XLK: Capitalization Strategy

Capitalization strategy plays a pivotal role in determining the risk and return profile of an ETF. ARKK, with its active management, has the flexibility to invest in companies of various sizes, from large-cap to small-cap. This allows ARKK to potentially capture higher returns, but it also comes with increased volatility.
XLK, being a passive fund, primarily focuses on large-cap tech companies. This means that it offers stability and is less susceptible to market fluctuations compared to ARKK. For investors who prioritize stability over high returns, XLK might be a more suitable choice. However, those willing to embrace volatility for potentially higher returns might lean towards ARKK.

ARKK VS XLK: Tracking and Exposure

Tracking and exposure are crucial aspects to consider when evaluating ETFs. ARKK, being an actively managed fund, doesn't track any particular index. Instead, it relies on the expertise of its fund managers to pick stocks that align with its investment thesis. This approach allows ARKK to pivot its holdings based on market conditions and emerging trends.
XLK, as a passive fund, tracks the Technology Select Sector Index. Its primary goal is to replicate the performance of this index. This means that XLK's holdings and weightings are predetermined, offering investors a clear picture of what they're investing in. When comparing ARKK vs XLK in terms of tracking and exposure, it's evident that ARKK offers more flexibility, while XLK provides predictability.


The debate between ARKK vs XLK boils down to individual investment goals and risk tolerance. ARKK, with its focus on disruptive innovation and active management, is suitable for investors seeking higher returns and willing to take on more risk. XLK, with its emphasis on established tech giants and passive management, is ideal for those looking for stability and consistent performance.
Both ETFs have their merits, and the choice between them should be based on an investor's unique financial situation and objectives. It's always recommended to consult with a financial advisor before making any investment decisions.


  1. ARK Invest official website.
  2. State Street Global Advisors official website.
  3. S&P 500 Technology Select Sector Index official page.

ARKK ETF issuer
ARKK ETF official page

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