July 2013

The money markets are concerned with very liquid securities investment products based upon cash-flows, with usually less than one year to maturity and without associated coupons. Typical investment products include government treasury bills, certificates of deposit, commercial paper, and short-term zero-coupon bonds.

Although investment yields are often lower than long-term bonds and other equity-based investments, the high liquidity in the money markets means you can get in and out of your positions relatively quickly and easily.

Therefore the money markets attract large investors such as insurance companies who may need to turn investments into cash at very short notice.

The key yield curve in the money markets is the Inter-Bank Offer Rate (such as LIBOR), which itself is closely related to the market riskless rate. Many corporate products (such as commercial paper) have yields based upon a ‘spread’ to floating Inter-Bank Offer Rates (i.e. they offer higher yields than bank-to-bank loans and treasury bills).

There are also four other key yield measures employed in the money markets.

These are the Bank Discount Yield, the Holding Period Yield, the (simple) Money Market Yield, and the Effective (compounded) Annual Yield.

This lecture discusses all four, how they are used, how they are related, and how they offer different kinds of short-term investment information.

The full YouTube playlist of Securities Investment 101 lecture videos can be found by clicking here.

Please read our disclaimer.

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In this lecture we discuss what inter-bank offer rates are, where they originated, and how they are typically calculated on a daily business-day basis.

Although providing a ‘generic’ description of how they work, and mentioning several of the major international alternatives, we also provide information on one of the major inter-bank offer rates (as of 2013), which is LIBOR, the London Inter-Bank Offer Rate.

The full YouTube playlist of Securities Investment 101 lecture videos can be found by clicking here.

Please read our disclaimer.

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