If you're willing to accept some risk, there are investment alternatives that provide higher yields. This WSJ article
has a good overview of an investment like this called floating-rate funds.
Loans are far from risk-free. They are best viewed as a subset of the high-yield market, and they look attractive relative to high-yield bonds, some managers say. While the yields are lower—the average junk bond yields about 7.3% to maturity, about 2.3 points more than a floating-rate loan—loans can help diversify an income portfolio.