ETF Trends
ETF Trends

As the U.S. economic engine revs up, investors are becoming more comfortable with riskier small-cap stocks, piling into high-yield business development companies and related exchange traded funds.

In 2013, investors allocated $4.1 billion to publicly traded business development corporations, the most since 2007, reports Lisa Abramowicz for Bloomberg.

“It’s going to continue to attract a fair amount of investor interest,” Theodore Koenig, chief executive officer at Monroe Capital Partners LP, said in the article. “This has been a great asset class because credit has been relatively benign.”

BDC investors are now betting on an expanding economy, which will support earnings for companies that are most vulnerable to default, while generating some attractive yields.

“The market’s realizing there’s still this pocket of money that’s getting outsized returns,” Troy Ward, a strategist at KBW, said in the article. Because few investors are able to buy the infrequently traded loans directly, “there’s not that many buckets of capital that are chasing this asset class.”

Looking ahead, Congress is looking to modify existing regulations to allow more leverage at the firms, which could boost gains, along with potential losses. The potential regulatory expansion would allow BDCs to incur more than the current limit of one dollar of debt per every dollar equity raised.

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