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Posts Tagged ‘generic bonds’

Municipal Bonds Are Different

February 3rd, 2017 by Kurt L. Smith

While technically all municipal bonds are government bonds, municipal bonds represent a subset of government bonds. Unlike the behemoth debt associated with almost all countries on the planet, including ours, municipal bonds are, well, usually smaller and sometimes just small.

Size matters, except when it comes to debt, bigger usually is not better. This is a qualitative difference where municipal bonds have the ability to shine. Unlike the debt upon debt upon debt of most government debt today, municipalities have the ability to truly be unique in their amount of leverage.

All five year bonds are five year bonds. And almost every five year government bond will be repaid because the government has promised to repay it. These government bonds carry the “full faith and credit” of their issuer to be repaid and are known as general obligation bonds.

When it comes to general obligations, bigger can indeed be better. Larger governments usually have more resources and usually are viewed as being less risky, or even safe or without (credit) risk as United States treasury bonds were viewed. (more…)

Our Plan Continues To Come Together

June 14th, 2016 by Kurt L. Smith

There has been no letup in the municipal bond market this year. Yields are low, prices high and firm. Yet we continue to find worthwhile bonds which I believe is a testament to our approach.

Thankfully, the municipal bond market provides a tremendous amount of variety. We have fifty states plus Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands and Guam. We have general obligations, revenue bonds of an almost endless variety, along with debt secured  by countless types of assets. All this variety and that’s before we throw on the essentials for fixed income: a coupon rate and maturity.

This variety, the anti-generic, is a crucial component of our approach. It is unique in the investment world and this is tremendously important as the world of investing has largely become one big, high-priced, low yielding world in which returns are piddling, that is when values aren’t plunging.

Asset classes, across the spectrum, are struggling, some plunge and pop, but overall it is downright tough to have a plan to diversify a portfolio and feel comfortable that you are making progress with your investments. Traditional thinking has failed to work, or just plain failed, while unconventional thinking seems to be …conventional. Where are the ideas that work? (more…)

NEWS FEED

The $247 trillion global debt bomb washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-2…