On the retreat….

Tuesday, 4th June 2019

On the retreat….

Bonds are pretty dull fare….

The character Jared Vennett (played by Ryan Gosling) in the film The Big Short summed it up better than I can….

‘If banking was boring, then the bond department at the bank was straight up comatose. We all know about bonds. You give ‘em to your snot-nosed kid when he turns 15; maybe, when he’s 30, he makes a hundred bucks. Boring.’

But boring or not, the bond markets are sometimes instructive….

They sometimes have something important to tell us….

And now is one of those times….

  • First, how bonds work….

Before we get into the nitty-gritty, it’s important to understand how bonds work….

I’m no expert, but here are the basics we need for our purposes today….

When you buy a bond, you are basically lending the bond issuer money. You buy at the current price and the lender pays you what is called a yield – like interest….

For the purposes of this column today, the important bit is this: the yield of a bond is inversely related to its current price. If the price of a bond falls, its yield goes up. If the price of a bond goes up, the yield falls….… Click here to read more