Battered stock market investors seeking a safe haven in bonds should consider moving assets into the iShares Core US Aggregate Bond ETF (AGG) - Get iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF Report , said Matt Tucker, head of fixed income strategy at iShares.
"This is the kind of market where you are seeing a lot of red, where equities are dropping and you want to have that core fixed income position," said Tucker. "The AGG is the largest fixed income ETF in the world and it's actually up this year in the face of a lot of red."
The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost more ground Wednesday, falling by 250 points, a decline of 1.6%.
The $31 billion iShares Core US Aggregate Bond ETF is up 1% so far in 2016. The investment grade bond ETF, which is benchmarked against Barclay's U.S. Aggregate Bond Index, holds mortgage-backed securities, Treasuries and corporate bonds.
The fund does not hold high yield, or junk, bonds so investors seeking to pick up additional yield with less security might want to opt for the iShares iBoxx $ High Yield Corporate Bond ETF (HYG) - Get iShares iBoxx $ High Yield Corporate Bond ETF Report . That fund has dropped 5% so far in 2016 after falling 5% last year.
"It's a little tough to call the bottom just yet, but HYG is the ticker to watch when you are looking to call that bottom, or looking for that turn," said Tucker. "The fund will show you what's happening in the market all day throughout the day."
Since high yield has been falling with equities, Tucker said investors seeking to weather the storm in stocks might want to try the iShares Short Maturity Bond (NEAR) - Get iShares Short Maturity Bond ETF Report . That fund, which does not track a particular benchmark, holds at least 80% of its net assets in a portfolio of U.S. dollar-denominated, investment-grade, fixed-income securities.
"It's got a yield of about 1% and a duration of about a third of a year, so that's not a lot of rate risk and you are picking up some yield," said Tucker.
"It's not cash, but it's a way to be conservative with your investment in fixed income and still pick up some yield in this market."