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|Subject: Re: Callable Bonds||Date: 11/29/2001 2:04 PM|
|Author: elvisisalive||Number: 2500 of 35400|
Up here in Canada* there is no obligation to notify bondholders if the bond was issued as Callable. The rules south of the border may vary depending on the type of bond (Muni vs Corporate etc), but I would look at the terms provided by the issuer. If you own a specific corporate issue you should be able to track down an investor relations professional at the company, feel free to tell them you own a large block of stock but that it's held in the street's name (they won't be able to confirm or deny) and you'll find they're willing to discuss all kinds of things.
Callable bonds should be purchased with a certain amount of hesitation. If (say) you bought a 6.5% bond but rates fall to 2.5% (like now) the company might recall all their bonds and refinance through a bank at a 4% gain. You might have bought this bond at a premium to face value and now are going to be paid out the face value in exchange for hedging the company on interest risk. Rest assured that no company in history has recalled a bond when interest rates were in favour of the issuer. If the Fed had been hiking rates to 9.5% right now you be stuck with an underperforming bond which you would have to sell at a discount.
Be careful with these instruments, they're designed to favour the issuer. Before buying (or if you hold) you should contact the underwriter of the issue for a short prospectus, most of the time you can get a three page summary of the issue.
*please forgive the extra letter u I slip in every now and again.
Elvis lives on in all of us...
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