The growth of some high-yield and international bond ETFs show what is likely heavy institutional buying. For example, as investors have poured into lower duration high-yield fare, the PIMCO 0-5 Year High Yield Corporate Bond (NYSEArca: HYS) and the SPDR Barclays Short Term High Yield Bond ETF (NYSEArca: SJNK) have seen combined 2014 inflows north of $2.6 billion while the AdvisorShares Peritus High Yield ETF (NYSEArca: HYLD) has more than doubled in size to become one the most recent additions to the $1 billion in assets under management club. [Short Duration Junk Bond ETFs in Focus]

After emerging markets bonds were pummeled last year, institutional investors have raced back into that asset class as well. The iShares J.P. Morgan USD Emerging Markets Bond ETF (NYSEArca: EMB) has garnered over $1.4 billion in new assets while only five PowerShares ETFs have added more new assets this year than the PowerShares Emerging Markets Sovereign Debt Portfolio (NYSEArca: PCY).

iShares iBoxx $ High Yield Corporate Bond ETF

Tom Lydon’s clients own shares of HYG and HYLD.