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I received my first coupon last week… I hope it’s a long-long time until my first default. (LOL)

Howard,

Default isn't a problem. Recovery-rate is what matters, and that's why you're buying cheaply, to create --in Ben Graham's words-- a Margin of Safety. The closer you can buy to a Ch 11 workout price, the greater your margin of safety.

I have to watch that I don’t get complacent and lower my standards. Maybe I need to stand back for a while.

It isn't "complacency" that will do you in but "desperation", the urge to put money to work when it really should be parked and sat on until the buying time returns.

On the other hand, markets are crazy and are constantly doing unexpected things. Pull price charts for Pru's bonds. A couple weeks ago, long after the March 9 low, prices did a 2-3 day collapse that offered yield twice what they now do. And just as fast they snapped back to previous levels (and, meanwhile, the stock price didn't even wiggle). But had I been doing my daily shopping as I should have been, one of those bonds would be in my account right now.

Same-same with other fleeting opportunities, especially mis-priced singles and doubles. They aren't always a bargain, but they are always worth looking for. And the only way to find them is to put in "screen time". Not fun to spend hours shopping and have nothing to show for it, but the shopping needs doing.

You're right. On the whole, the bond market is presently very over-bought, and yield-curves are getting very flat, which is probably something I need to investigate. But, meanwhile, I'm spending my time posting, instead of shopping, because I'm so disgusted by prices. :-/

Charlie
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