Here Are The 20 Best Income Portfolios Built with ETFs for 2023

If you’re looking for income, then one of these portfolios should be on your radar.

We have compared the dividend yields of over 600 portfolios and present you with top 20 yielding portfolios.

Article contents

Here are the best income portfolios

Below you can see the portfolios with the highest 12-month trailing dividend yield.

Portfolio data was last updated on 2nd of March 2023, 03:22 ET

NameSee PortfolioYear to dateReturn in 202210 year returnCAGR since 1989 (%)Draw DownExpense ratioYield %
Rick Ferri Inflation Fighter Core-4 Portfolio Low-RiskFree0.49-
Institute of Business and Finance Income PortfolioComing soon!-0.51-11.091.635.97-11.090.15%4.24
Scott Burns Couch PotatoFree2.69-
Larry Swedroe Simple PortfolioFree3.68-6.715.968.23-23.80.12%4.21
Dimensional Retirement Income FundFree0.82-6.82.976.15-7.730.05%4.18
Bogleheads Guide to Investing - An Investor in Late RetirementComing soon!0.74-10.333.546.7-10.330.04%4.07
William Bernstein Sheltered Sam 100% BondsFree-0.16-4.561.435.11-4.560.05%3.99
Rick Ferri Inflation Fighter Core-4 Portfolio ConservativeFree1.42-13.84.356.95-19.650.09%3.97
Rick Ferri Income Seeker Core-4 Portfolio Low-RiskFree0.61-14.773.596.78-16.150.21%3.86
William Bernstein Sheltered Sam 10/90Free0.23-5.312.275.64-7.210.06%3.84
Larry Swedroe, Eliminate Fat Tails Portfolio (value tilt)Free1.72-5.692.786.51-13.550.10%3.81
The Andrew Tobias PortfolioFree3.24-12.756.157.34-28.050.05%3.78
Scott Burns MargaritavilleFree3.24-12.756.157.34-28.050.05%3.78
Morningstar Lifetime Allocation Index Conservative, IncomeFree0.64-9.373.056.48-9.370.08%3.73
Rick Ferri Income Seeker Core-4 Portfolio ConservativeFree0.74-11.555.077.33-21.070.20%3.72
William Bernstein Sheltered Sam 20/80Free0.62-
Dimensional 2030 Target Date Retirement Income FundFree2.44-
Rick Ferri Income Seeker Core-4 Portfolio ModerateFree0.88-8.326.497.81-26.00.18%3.58
Bogleheads Guide to Investing - An Investor in Early RetirementComing soon!1.84-
William Bernstein Sheltered Sam 30/70Free1.01-6.833.96.64-13.820.07%3.52
The top 20 income portfolios

Here is what the table is showing you

Year to date: This shows what the portfolio has returned this year starting from the first trading day of the year.

10 Year return: This shows the compounded annualized growth rate over a ten-year period. The current year is excluded from calculations.

CAGR since 1989: This shows the compounded annualized growth rate since 1989. The current year is excluded from calculations.

Expense ratio: This shows the cost of holding the portfolio if you were to construct the portfolio using the proposed ETFs.

Yield: This is the expected dividend yield of the portfolio.

Please note that past performance is not a guarantee of future returns.

What is an income portfolio?

An income portfolio is a portfolio where the main objective is generating a sufficient income from the portfolio.

A capital appreciation portfolio on the other hand is a portfolio that seeks to maximize stock returns in the portfolio.

Which asset classes are good for income?

When building your income portfolio, you need to consider the choice of asset classes. This is because there are some asset classes that generate a far higher and consistent income than other portfolios.

Below you can see some of the asset classes that have consistent yields:

  • Bonds
  • REITs
  • High-yield bonds
  • Emerging market bonds

Should you pick an income portfolio or a high-returning portfolio?

Some like to depend on a steady income stream to pay for their expenses. The opposite of that is building a portfolio that rises in value over time. This is capital appreciation.

We have found that capital appreciation portfolios generate far higher returns than income portfolios. But they also come with higher drawdowns.

Below you can see the highest returning portfolios we benchmark. We call them the premium portfolios.

If you build a premium portfolio, you will not get as high a yield as with an income portfolio but you will most likely get a higher total return. Total return equals dividends + capital appreciation.

NameSee PortfolioYear to dateReturn in 202210 year returnCAGR since 1989 (%)Draw Down
Premium PortfolioPremium1.1-18.039.4610.8-35.42
Premium PortfolioPremium5.59-11.9811.2510.38-35.26
Premium PortfolioPremium3.65-18.1912.5210.28-37.63
Premium PortfolioPremium8.92-13.088.2810.2-36.46
Premium PortfolioPremium3.55-18.757.010.19-44.88
Premium PortfolioPremium5.04-19.5112.0810.19-37.0
Premium PortfolioPremium4.67-13.919.710.16-40.85
Premium PortfolioPremium8.46-13.228.3110.08-36.35
Premium PortfolioPremium4.85-16.947.599.99-37.91
Premium PortfolioPremium4.43-18.8711.039.84-32.78
The 10 Best Performing Portfolios That We Have Benchmarked

Are REITs a good investment?

REITs have historicly been a great investment. They have returned just about the same as stocks. A good ETF for REITs is Vanguard’s REIT ETF with the ticker symbol (VNQ).