This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Top 10 Total Bond, Muni, Preferred-Stock ETFs

This posting completes a comprehensive review in the fixed-income ETF segment. While this review seems a grab-bag collection of issues, we like keeping the list of choices at 10. This seems more manageable for most investors. We're not necessarily recommending one issue over another and where other interesting choices exist we mention them within each featured issue's review. Let's remember, in the fixed-income sector there are many choices, but with many being repetitive it's not necessary to cover them all. Each sponsor might disagree naturally.

Our goal is to cover the most important ETFs within each category using high assets under management, liquidity and/or strategies that make a difference in the critical tests. Newer issues tied to new indices with long (more than five years) of historical data may be worth investigating, featuring and using as a replacement if necessary.

We'll begin our review with Total Bond ETFs which have the characteristic of incorporating many different maturities and issues into one all-inclusive issue.

AGG (iShares Barclays Aggregate Bond Fund ETF) follows the Barclays Capital U.S. Aggregate Bond Index. It is the first, (launched September 2003) of several bond ETFs with a mix of U.S. Government, mortgage-backed, investment grade corporate and even some municipal bond securities. AUM (Assets under Management) exceeds $12 billion, average daily trading volume is over 750K shares and the expense ratio is .24%. The credit quality is all above BBB with 75% being AAA, while the maturity range is roughly 60% below 10 years with the balance 20 years or longer. The 12 month yield as of June 9, 2011 is 3.37%.

Data as of 6-03-2011

AGG Top Ten Holdings
  1. US Treasury Note        4.75%:                         3.76%
  2. US Treasury Bond       7.5%:               2.58%
  3. US Treasury Note        3.625%:           2.52%
  4. US Treasury Note        3.125%:           2.35%
  5. US Treasury Bond       8.125%:           2.02%
  6. Freddie Mac                4.5%:               1.94%
  7. US Treasury Note        3.375%:           1.93%
  8. US Treasury Note        1.75%:                         1.47%
  9. US Treasury Bond       7.625%:           1.47%
  10. US Treasury Bond       4.625%:           1.26%

 BND (Vanguard Total Bond Market ETF) also follows the Barclays U.S. Aggregate Bond Index and was launched in March 2003. Given the index, you'll not find much variation in holdings, durations or credit quality. The major difference is the expense ratio is .12% or half AGG and with yields this low it does make a difference. AUM equals $10 billion and average daily trading volume is near 800K shares. The current yield is around 2.67% but the total return over the past 12 months is nearly 5%.

You should also note Vanguard offers BSV (Vanguard Short-Term Bond ETF) which would compete nicely with previously featured SHY (iShares Short-Term Treasury ETF) 

Data as of 6-03-2011

BND Top Ten Holdings
  1. CMT Market Liquidity Rate:                 2.94%
  2. US Treasury Note        1.75%:            1.11%
  3. US Treasury Bond       6.25%:            0.88%
  4. US Treasury Note        0.375%:           0.88%
  5. US Treasury Note        1.375%:           0.85%
  6. US Treasury Note        0.75%:                         0.83%
  7. US Treasury Note        1.875%:           0.82%
  8. US Treasury Note        1.375%:           0.76%
  9. US Treasury Note        2.75%:                         0.65%
  10. US Treasury Note        1.75%:                         0.58%


GBF (iShares Barclays Government/Credit Bond ETF) tracks the Barclays Capital U.S. Government/Credit Bond Index was launched in January 2007. The AUM is a little over $100M and average daily trading volume is less than 6K shares. This ETF follows a wide range of bond issues with maturities greater than 1 year with roughly 47% below 5 years and balance evenly spread beyond. Over 65% of the assets are AAA rated with the balance investment grade except for 1.25% non-rated. The expense ratio is .20% and the one year return as of March 2011 was 5.11% while the current yield is roughly 3%.

Data as of June-03-2011

GBF Top Ten Holdings
  1. US Treasury Note        4.75%              7.70%
  2. US Treasury Note        4.625%            6.40%
  3. US Treasury Note        3.625%            5.70%
  4. US Treasury Note        1.375%            4.42%
  5. US Treasury Bond       7.625%            2.90%
  6. US Treasury Note        2.375%                        2.62%
  7. Bank of America           3.125%            2.37%
  8. US Treasury Note        1.25%              2.33%
  9. US Treasury Note        1.25%              2.33%
  10. US Treasury Note        0.625%                        2.31%

1 of 4

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
AAPL $94.27 -0.76%
FB $101.00 1.47%
GOOG $684.12 0.89%
TSLA $143.67 -3.09%
YHOO $27.10 1.04%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 15,914.74 -99.64 -0.62%
S&P 500 1,851.86 -0.35 -0.02%
NASDAQ 4,283.5920 +14.8290 0.35%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs