There are approximately 60 corporate bond exchange traded funds holdings issues of varying credit quality on the market today.
That means it is easy for a few of those funds to slip through the cracks and that also means opportunity exists for income investors to find some hidden gems in the corporate bond ETF space. One of those hidden gems is the WisdomTree Strategic Corporate Bond Fund (NasdaqGM: CRDT).
CRDT, which debuted in January 2013, is actively managed in partnership with Western Asset Management. While active management has taken its lumps in recent years, corporate bonds stick out as a corner of the investment landscape where active can and does work.
“Through a combination of fundamental analysis and the ability to deviate from a mechanical investment process, active management may be able to help add value by avoiding deteriorating credits. In the past 10 years, avoiding the worst performing issuers (bottom 10%) in the Barclays U.S. Credit Index would have increased average annual performance by 1.1% per year. In a low-yield environment, potentially avoiding these underperforming issuers could have a significant impact on total returns,” according to WisdomTree.
CRDT, which is reasonably priced among active ETFs at 0.45% per year, has an effective duration of 5.71 years with a 30-day SEC yield of 3.24%. The fund’s credit quality tilts toward the investment-grade end of the spectrum. More than 31% of CRDT’s 67 holdings are rated BBB while another 30% are rated A and nearly 7% are rated AA. [Asset Allocation With WisdomTree ETFs]
Importantly, CRDT has delivered for investors since coming to market two and half years ago.