Why Junk Bonds Look Appealing

Should you stock up on this riskier but potentially higher rewarding asset class?

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Junk bonds may be the investment with the scariest name, and clearly, they should be used only to compliment a well-rounded fixed-income and equity portfolio. But investors who are not willing to blend in high yield may just risk a missed opportunity.

See U.S. News's top-ranked high-yield bond funds:

Fidelity Capital and Income (FAGIX): down 6.5 percent YTD, up 7 percent over five years; high risk rating within category; above-average 0.76 percent expense ratio.

TIAA-CREF High Yield (TIHYX): down 0.9 percent YTD, up 6.8 percent over five years; below-average risk rating within category; average 0.4 percent expense ratio.

Federated Institutional High Yield Bond (FIHBX): down 0.7 percent YTD, up 7.1 percent over five years; average risk rating within category; average 0.49 percent expense ratio.

John Hancock II U.S. High Yield (JIHLX): up 0.3 percent YTD, up 6.6 percent over five years; below-average risk rating within category; above-average 0.81 percent expense ratio.

Old Mutual Dwight High Yield (ODHYX): down 0.8 percent YTD, up 18 percent over three years; below-average risk rating within category; above-average 0.8 percent expense ratio.