When engaging in fixed-income investing, credit research plays an important role in minimizing your risks. What is fixed-income investing? Fixed-income investing is essentially the buying of bonds from a government or corporation. Bonds are bought at an initial amount, and investors are repaid the sum along with interest when the bond reaches maturity. Credit research plays an important role because it helps investors determine if a company or organization is capable of honoring the agreement.
How does such a situation arise? Oftentimes, the government or corporation that releases the bonds is attempting to raise money for a project. For example, suppose the local government in your area wishes to raise funds to build a local hospital. Your local government will issue bonds of a certain amount, along with a period and interest rate. When the stipulated time has passed, investors who availed of a bond will receive their initial investment plus the amount generated from the interest rate. Hence, one can think of fixed-income investing as a loan being given out to governments and businesses with the promise that the loan amount be repaid.
Bonds, or fixed-income investing, is a large market and investors should avail of it for effective financial planning and wealth management.
Why Fixed-Income Investing?
There are many advantages to fixed-income investing. It is a great way for an investor to diversify their portfolio. The stock market can be volatile. Investors should spread their investment instruments across a range of assets. Fixed-income investing offers the perfect counterbalance as a low-risk form of investment that offers stable and predictable returns. Fixed-income investing, or the purchasing of bonds is especially useful for retirees who are more sensitive to portfolio volatility as they have less time to recoup losses.
One of the risks associated with fixed-income investing is credit risk. Credit risk denotes the extent to which a company might be likely to default. In such an event, an investor could lose some or even all of their investment. For this reason, investors should use agencies or advisors that engage in Credit Research to ensure that this risk is mitigated.
What is Credit Research?
Credit research is conducted to evaluate a company’s financial position. Credit research’s main purpose is to determine whether a company can sustain itself with its current equity and debt structure. This analysis allows credit research agencies to determine the likelihood of a company paying back the amount it has borrowed by selling bonds. Credit research usually offers a short-term perspective. Can the company pay back the loan amount when the bond matures? Credit research reports are usually only interested in the answer to this question. To help answer this question, credit research makes use of a company’s balance sheet and cash flow.
Investors can utilize credit rating lists that are generated by companies to evaluate the risk of an investment before deciding their next step.
Where Should I Invest?
Here are some common investment options that you can avail of to diversify your investment portfolio.
- Fixed Income Mutual Funds
- Treasury bills
- Treasury notes
- Corporate bonds
- Municipal bonds
- High-yield bonds
Fixed-income investing is the purchasing of bonds from either a government or a corporation. Organizations issue these bonds as a way of raising funds for their projects and ventures. Bonds have a maturity date. When the maturity date arrives, governments and companies are expected to repay bondholders the initial amount plus an interest amount. Fixed-income investing is a great way to diversify your investment portfolio. They are often low-risk assets that generate stable income. A downside to fixed-income investing is credit risk, which is the probability that a company will default on its loan.
Investors can avail of credit research provided by research firms and analysts to determine safe investments. Credit researchers make use of a company’s cash flow and balance sheet to determine if a company can repay its loans when bonds mature. Investors should consult with their financial advisors and utilize the credit risk ratings of agencies to ensure maximum benefits.