08 - CHAPTER 8 INTEREST RATES AND BOND VALUATION Answers to...

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CHAPTER 8 INTEREST RATES AND BOND VALUATION Answers to Concept Questions 1. No. As interest rates fluctuate, the value of a Treasury security will fluctuate. Long-term Treasury securities have substantial interest rate risk. 2. All else the same, the Treasury security will have lower coupons because of its lower default risk, so it will have greater interest rate risk. 3. No. If the bid were higher than the ask, the implication would be that a dealer was willing to sell a bond and immediately buy it back at a higher price. How many such transactions would you like to do? 4. Prices and yields move in opposite directions. Since the bid price must be lower, the bid yield must be higher. 5. Bond issuers look at outstanding bonds of similar maturity and risk. The yields on such bonds are used to establish the coupon rate necessary for a particular issue to initially sell for par value. Bond issuers also simply ask potential purchasers what coupon rate would be necessary to attract them. The coupon rate is fixed and simply determines what the bond’s coupon payments will be. The required return is what investors actually demand on the issue, and it will fluctuate through time. The coupon rate and required return are equal only if the bond sells for exactly at par. 6. Yes. Some investors have obligations that are denominated in dollars; i.e., they are nominal. Their primary concern is that an investment provides the needed nominal dollar amounts. Pension funds, for example, often must plan for pension payments many years in the future. If those payments are fixed in dollar terms, then it is the nominal return on an investment that is important.
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7. Companies pay to have their bonds rated simply because unrated bonds can be difficult to sell; many large investors are prohibited from investing in unrated issues. 8. Treasury bonds have no credit risk since it is backed by the U.S. government, so a rating is not necessary. Junk bonds often are not rated because there would be no point in an issuer paying a rating agency to assign its bonds a low rating (it’s like paying someone to kick you!). 9. The term structure is based on pure discount bonds. The yield curve is based on coupon-bearing issues. 10. Bond ratings have a subjective factor to them. Split ratings reflect a difference of opinion among credit agencies.
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11. As a general constitutional principle, the federal government cannot tax the states without their consent if doing so would interfere with state government functions. At one time, this principle was thought to provide for the tax-exempt status of municipal interest payments. However, modern court rulings make it clear that Congress can revoke the municipal exemption, so the only basis now appears to be historical precedent. The fact that the states and the federal government do not tax each other’s securities is referred to as “reciprocal immunity.” 12. Lack of transparency means that a buyer or seller can’t see recent transactions, so it is much harder
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This note was uploaded on 04/03/2011 for the course FIN 100 taught by Professor Singh during the Spring '11 term at HKU.

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08 - CHAPTER 8 INTEREST RATES AND BOND VALUATION Answers to...

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