International high-yield bond exchange traded funds are outpacing U.S. junk bonds as European speculative-grade debt rose for the sixth consecutive week.
The Market Vectors International High Yield Bond ETF (NYSEArca: IHY) has gained 0.5% over the past week and is up 4.0% over the last month, and the iShares Global ex USD High Yield Corporate Bond ETF (NSYEArca: HYXU) is 1.8% higher over the last week and increased 6.4% over the past month.
In comparison, the SPDR Barclays High Yield Bond ETF (NYSEARca: JNK) is flat over the past week and rose 1.3% over the past month.
Junk-rated European corporate bonds returned 0.2% this week, accumulating a six-week gain of 2.1% after falling an average 2.3% in June, Bloomberg reports.
In the last two weeks of July, European high-yield debt returned 0.84%, whereas U.S. high-yield debt lost 0.4%, Robert Smith for Reuters reports.
U.S. junk bond mutual funds experienced $1 billion in outflows last week while European high-yield funds brought in $231 million.
European debt markets are rebounding after the Fed reaffirmed its “accommodative” monetary policies until the U.S. economy improved. [A High-Yield Bond ETF for Rising Rates]
“Credit markets have been fairly resilient so far in August,” Joseph Faith, a credit strategist at Citigroup Inc., said in the Bloomberg. “Uncertainty may rise again going into September but we still expect spreads to end the year tighter than where they are now.”
Additionally, some argue that European debt now offers better credit quality protection and insulation from rate hikes, compared to U.S. debt.