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Credit investing glossary

Credit spread

The credit spread is the difference in yield between bonds of a similar maturity but with different credit quality. Spread is measured in basis points.

Typically, it is calculated as the difference between the yield on a corporate bond and the benchmark rate. The yield on a government bond generally is considered to be a benchmark rate. The credit spread thus gives an indication of the additional risk that lenders take when they buy corporate debt versus government debt of the same maturity.

Consistently at the forefront of credit management
Consistently at the forefront of credit management
Credit investing
Changes in the spread indicate that perceptions of the risk of a specific issuer has changed or that perceptions of general market conditions have changed. For example, if the market becomes more skeptical about the creditworthiness of an issuing company, the spread of that company’s bonds widens (its yield relative to the benchmark widens). Or, if markets become more negative and risk-averse, spreads in general tend to widen. Similarly, if sentiment towards an issuer or a market improves, the relevant spreads would decrease.
Credit outlook: There is no average
Credit outlook: There is no average
There is a bid for safety in credit markets, but a need for yield.
10-12-2019 | Quarterly outlook
Measuring credit risk with Duration Times Spread
Measuring credit risk with Duration Times Spread
Accurately measuring credit risk is a significant challenge for credit investors.
10-12-2019 | Insight
Scenario analysis confirms need for defensive credit market positioning
Scenario analysis confirms need for defensive credit market positioning
Our analysis of spread markets suggests the most likely scenario in coming months is that of low growth and low inflation.
03-12-2019 | Insight