what are bond etfs

How to build a Bond ETFs portfolio?

Bond ETFs are exchange-traded funds that invest exclusively in bonds. They hold a portfolio of bonds with various strategies and holding periods.  

Bond ETFs are for treasuries, corporates, convertibles, floating-rate bonds, etc.

Bond ETFs are analogous to stock ETFs as they are passively managed and traded in the secondary market. ETFs have become especially prominent vehicles for entering the fixed income segment of the market in recent years.  

Investors have gradually become more comfortable with the mix of fixed income exposure and the exchange-traded structure, which grew far more slowly than equities ETFs at first. 

Investors in bond ETFs are typically attracted to a product like the Total Bond Market ETFs, which provide exposure to the entire bond market in one shot.  

Treasuries dominate many ETFs that expose the investment-grade U.S. debt market, a bias that stems from the sheer scale of the U.S. government’s debt obligations.  

As a result, there is a concentration within a single issuer, which may not be an ideal thing to do for investors looking to build a well-balanced long-term portfolio.  

Several ETFs can augment this fixed income exposure, providing affordable and efficient access to parts of the global bond market not included in popular bond ETFs like AGG and BND.

what are bond etfs

Municipal bonds, often called Munis, are also very secure and stable bonds. Municipal bonds typically include tax-free interest payments, making them attractive to investors in higher tax bonds.  

On the other hand, these bonds can be helpful in various portfolios, potentially boosting the yields on government debt. Some ETFs specialize in multiple durations and credit quality, from low-risk pre-refunded Munis to speculative high-yield municipal debt. 

Build America Bonds are a unique section of the municipal bond market that can provide investors with significant actual returns while posing a low risk of default.  

The Build America Program aimed to lower borrowing costs for towns seeking to complete critical capital projects. BABs are taxable bonds issued by state and local governments, with the U.S.  

The Treasury is subsidizing the interest on the bonds. BABs are appealing because of their unique structure, which provides an attractive coupon for investors. 

Many of the new fixed-income ETFs launched in recent years have concentrated on bond markets outside of the United States, and a variety of broad-based and precise ETFs are available to access this asset class. 

Multinational Corporate Bonds give investors access to international corporate debt products, which are a force to be reckoned with. 

Emerging Market Bonds are a group of instruments that provide investors with exposure to both dollar-denominated and local currency-denominated bonds.  

Those seeking greater dollar diversification will generally be better suited to investing in issues denominated in foreign currencies rather than the U.S. dollar. 

By employing three simple steps, we can create a bond portfolio
  1. Determine the allocation of choice in the fixed income ETFs. 
  1. Implement a prudent trade strategy to get maximum returns through a single purchase, SIP, or any other plan that the investor deems fit. 
  1. Monitoring and assessing the portfolio regularly. 

A bond portfolio can be made using the products mentioned earlier, weighting methodologies, management type, expense ratio, duration, credit quality, yield to maturity, and even returns. 

The taxability of the ETF should also be kept in mind. The ETF finder is a handy tool for such combing operations!

Consult an expert advisor to get the right plan for you

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