Wednesday, December 5

Converts and FX both heading for record volumes

Ha!, fun times are here again and as you can see, all the world's investors are rushing to protect themselves. Both the convertible and FX volumes are through the roof! I quote:

ICAP, the world’s premier interdealer broker, announced on Tuesday that average daily electronic broking volumes in spot foreign exchange had reached an all time high of $244.6 billion in November. This represents an increase of 61 percent on November 2006 ($151.5 billion) and compares to the previous record of $241.5 billion per day achieved in August 2007.

New issues of convertible bonds have surged to record levels this year, with volumes accelerating sharply since the start of the credit crisis as investors seek the safety of an instrument that is used more widely in volatile markets. Convertible bonds are protected on the down side because they guarantee a fixed rate of interest, while at the same time can be swapped into the issuing company’s shares. Nearly $170bn in convertible bonds have been issued this year – a record for the first 11 months of a year, according to Dealogic, the data provider. The figure is also close to surpassing the record-breaking full year of 2003, when volumes hit $172bn

All this to be taken with a grain of piquant salt!!!

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