Despite the fact that AGG has been usurped by Vanguard's BND, Blackrock's ( BLK) iShares product line maintains a solid presence in the realm of fixed-income ETFs. The iShares Barclays TIPS Bond Fund ( TIP) and the iShares iBoxx $ Investment Grade Corporate Bond Fund ( LQD) both sit comfortably at the top of the list, with $21.8 billion and $16.5 billion in total assets respectively.

As investors prepare for the end of the year, many of the same factors that have threatened the strength and stability of the global markets in recent months remain in play. Given these hurdles, fixed income ETFs will likely prove to be popular destinations for investors of all risk-tolerances. Although BND is currently leading AGG in terms of assets, both products are attractive options for individuals looking to build a strong shield against market volatility.

Written by Don Dion in Williamstown, Mass.

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At the time of publication, Dion Money Management owned iShares Gold Trust and iShares Barclays TIPS Bond Fund.

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