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I did miss something, I got it now, thanks for the great explanation.
So if I bought $3000 worth of VEXMX and $3000 worth of VXF and did nothing else for say 10 years, I could expect each to be worth about the same when sold after the 10 years (excluding any fees charged by where each was purchased and held).

From other posts it looks like to open a Roth IRA with $3000 and purchase one index fund at Vanguard I would pay nothing to make the purchase but $20 a year in fees ($10 for a balance under 5K and $10 for an index fund
with a balance under 10K). This $20 would also apply if I bought another index fund also. And there would be no charge to sell the fund later.

If I were to open a Roth IRA at Scottrade with $3000 and purchase about 37 shares of a $80 ETF it would cost me $7 and there would be no other fees per year, plus I could sell all the shares of the ETF later for another $7 and be back to cash.

So if I never bought more than the inital 3K and kept it for 10 years:
Vanguard would cost me $20 X 10(years) = $200 in fees
Scottrade would cost me $7 to buy and $7 to sell -- $14 in fees for 10 years.

I do understand once I got past the Vanuagrd minimums there would be no fees if I made a yearly contributions.

If one sells shares held at Vanguard, do the proceeds go to a cash account or do you have to transfer to another Vanguard fund only ?
Please let me know if have all this correct, thanks again for the help.

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