Bonds

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Bond Investing with a Conscience: Church Bonds

Talk about good deeds. Churches in the United States have issued bonds for more than a century now. The bonds are most often secured by a deed of trust on church real estate or other property. Traditionally [more…]

Bond Investing with a Conscience: Sukuk Bonds

According to the classical laws of Islam, paying or charging interest is a forbidden. You’d think, therefore, that bond investing would be considered sinful. Well, it depends on the bond. Some very special [more…]

Bond Investing with a Conscience: Socially Responsible Bonds

Socially responsible investing (SRI) can mean different things to different people, but for most, the goal of SRI is to shun bad-thinking-and-doing companies and embrace good-thinking-and-doing companies [more…]

Potentially Risky Bond Offerings: Bowie, Catastrophe, and Death Bonds

When rock star David Bowie decided in 1997 to produce his own bonds using his considerable talent (and future song royalties) as collateral, it struck some as a rocking good idea. Bowie got [more…]

Derivatives and Default Bond Products

If you think of debt securities as safe and boring, look at some of these investments, which are built on derivatives and defaulted bonds. You could double or triple your money overnight . . . or see it [more…]

Evaluating Exchange-Traded Notes

They sound like exchange-traded funds (investments similar to mutual funds, usually indexed mutual funds that trade like stocks), but exchange-traded notes [more…]

The Interest Rate Risk in Bond Investing

The vast majority of bond offerings are rather staid investments. You give your money to a government or corporation. You receive a steady flow of income, usually twice a year, for a certain number of [more…]

The Inflation Risk in Bond Investing

Although bonds are known for being safe investments, there is risk inherent in every investment. Bondholders do have first dibs on the issuer’s money. A corporation is legally bound to pay you your interest [more…]

The Reinvestment Risk in Bond Investing

The vast majority of bond offerings are rather staid investments. You give your money to a government or corporation. You receive a steady flow of income, usually twice a year, for a certain number of [more…]

The Default Risk in Bond Investing

Most people view bonds as low-risk investments. You give your money to a government or corporation. You receive a steady flow of income, usually twice a year, for a certain number of years. Then, typically [more…]

The Downgrade Risk in Bond Investing

Bond investing has a reputation for safety not only because bonds provide steady and predictable streams of income, but also because as a bondholder you have first dibs on the issuer’s money. A corporation [more…]

The Tax Risk in Bond Investing

Bond investing has a reputation for safety not only because bonds provide steady and predictable streams of income, but also because as a bondholder you have first dibs on the issuer’s money. A corporation [more…]

What Are the Best Emerging Market Bond Funds?

Emerging market bond funds are not for the faint of heart. If you're willing to deal with the volatility, emerging market bond funds — made up of bonds from countries such as Russia, Brazil, Mexico, and [more…]

Voice Your Personal Brand

If you master your voice, it can be a positive part of your image and brand. Obviously, your voice is a crucial communication tool. The quality of your voice is crucial to the quality of your communications [more…]

Minimum Required Distribution: Don't Miss It!

In the United States, people have the minimum required distribution (MRD) on 401(k) plans as well as regular and rollover IRAs. And woe is you if you miscalculate. Your finances will certainly be pummeled [more…]

Bond History: The Important Story of War Bonds

At the heart of the fundraising effort in World War II was the creation of war bonds. Even before the United States entered World War II, a massive effort was underway to raise money to build the military [more…]

Identifying Bonds: What Is a CUSIP, Anyway?

All bonds have a CUSIP that identifies the bond in the same way that a license plate identifies a vehicle. CUSIP stands for Committee on Uniform Securities Identification Procedures, [more…]

Investing in Bonds For Dummies Cheat Sheet

You may think of bonds as thoroughly modern financial instruments, but they have a long history. They played an important part in helping the Allies win World War II, for example. Every bond needs to be [more…]

How Exactly Does the Federal Reserve Move Interest Rates?

The U.S. Federal Reserve has three "magic" powers with which to expand or contract the money supply, or move interest rates. They are open market operations, the discount rate, and reserve requirements [more…]

Buying a Primary or Secondary Bond Issue

All bonds are traded through brokers. But some bonds available for sale are new or primary issues. Others are secondary issues. Yes, it's something like buying a new versus a used car — except the used [more…]

Choosing Between Active Mutual Funds and Passive (Index) Funds

One of the hottest debates among investors — one that will never end — is whether actively managed investments are any wiser than index fund investments. The simple answer is usually no, they are not. [more…]

How to Approach Selling Bonds Online

Selling bonds online can be a much trickier business than buying them. You have a particular bond you want to dump, and the market may or may not want it. [more…]

How to Find Fabulously Frugal Funds

Regardless of which way you decide to invest your money, bond funds or individual bonds, the going is easier and potentially more lucrative today than it was just several years ago. And it's getting easier [more…]

Dealing in Individual Bonds without Dealing over a Fortune

The transaction costs incurred when investing in individual bonds, which have traditionally been way higher than stock transaction costs, have been dropping faster than hail. [more…]

What Is the Yield Curve in Bond Investing?

A difficult decision for bond investors putting in fresh money occurs at those rare times in history when you see an inverted yield curve. The yield curve [more…]

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