Steven, "sell prior to maturity" for most invidividual investors is a very big problem. Bonds can be sold, but usually only to a bond dealer or the bond desk of a broker. They can offer you whatever they like. The market is not very competitive or efficient--especially for small holdings. Yes, they will buy it, but often they will get you for 3% or more (that can be 6 mo interest)--unless you're talking about $100K or more--some say a million or more.So its not usually wise for individuals to plan to sell their bonds. Hold them to maturity. Otherwise, stick to bond funds or CDs.
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