What the Heck is Happening to Junk Bonds?

by Wolf Richter
Wolf Street

Honeymoon already over? Bad breath of reality next?

If you bought the crappiest bonds on February 10, you’ve made a killing unless the company defaulted, in which case you got killed, and a lot of companies defaulted. But so much money poured into junk bonds that prices soared and yields plunged even for the riskiest near-default issues.

At the riskiest end, junk bonds rated CCC and lower, with D being default, the average yield, as per BofA Merrill Lynch High Yield index, plunged from over 21% on February 10 to 15% at the close yesterday. And bond prices skyrocketed. The BofA Merrill Lynch total return index for CCC and lower rated bonds soared 30% over the period:

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