How should one mitigate losses of last week? I am concerned but tend to move to quickly
closed as unclear what you're asking by Chris W. Rea, JoeTaxpayer♦ Feb 10 '15 at 3:21
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Both of your questions are prone to opinion and "religion." Goodness or Badness is a matter of what you're trying to accomplish, and there are infinite ways to accomplish that, so you will need to get information and make that decision yourself. Here's some information...
EDIT: added the above paragraph
The primary risk a bond fund introduces that individual bonds do not share is the fact that there is no maturity date by which you have an assurance of the principal amount being returned to you. If interest rates rise (a strong likelihood in most markets in the coming years), the asset values of the bonds in the fund will drop and you will see a drop in the value of your investment.
You'll also want to pay attention to the types of bonds the fund invests in. For example, convertibles and high-yield bonds tend to track the equity markets to some degree. That may or may not be what you want in your portfolio.
The best way to mitigate future losses is to keep short-term money (i.e., that you're about to spend) in short-term instruments (like cash). Then your longer-term money can ride out any short-term volatility brought on by current events.