ETF Safety in the Eye of the Beholder
Granted, true value seekers are not content with P/Es of 11 like VWO. That's why you may want to dig a little deeper in your quest.
State Street S&P China
(GXC) (GXC) recently reported a P/E of 9.3,
WisdomTree India Earnings
(EPI) last reported a P/E of 9.8 and
Global X FTSE Argentina
(ARGT) at 9.5. (Note: Again, I am not making "buy now" recommendations.)
3. High-yield corporates hedge against inflation. As much as the gloom-n-doomers (and the Fed) discuss the painful effects of deflation, there's no denying the fact that the U.S. Consumer Price Index has annualized at 2.25% over the last five years. The "Great Recession" may have destroyed net worth as well as wage growth, but "stuff" still costs more. Perhaps ironically, CPI does not really account for soaring health-care and college costs.
So what's needed? In my estimation, one needs a covert hedge against the erosion of purchasing power. With iShares Barclays 7-10 Year Treasury Bond Fund currently distributing 1.85%, iShares High Yield Corporate Bond (HYG) and its annual distribution of 7.35% is a spectacular hedge. Normally, the yield spread is around 4%, but the 5.5% spread over comparable Treasuries means that IEF could lose badly on rising interest rates or rising inflation while HYG would likely hold firm until the norm is restored.
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