Saturday 20 January 2018

The name is bonds, market bonds – slippery, secret agent

Fund managers will lend to Ireland to ensure better yields but it will cost us

ALL that trouble figuring out what a bondholder is – and even more trouble finding out who they are – but it's about to get worse. Now we must get our heads round the bond markets themselves.

It has already started. That EU finance ministers' decision to ask the Troika to accept a delay in repayment of its loans to Ireland is aimed squarely at the bond markets. (It must be assumed that the Troika will agree, though with the ECB you never can tell).

The promissory note deal had the same purpose. We are not talking about grandchildren this time, since the Troika extension is unlikely to be for more than 15 years. It is worth remembering though, as we start to get our heads around this not-so-brave new world, that government bonds themselves used to be meant for grandchildren.

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