Bond Discount

What is a 'Bond Discount'

The amount by which the market price of a bond is lower than its principal amount due at maturity. This amount, called its par value, is often $1,000. As bond prices are quoted as a percent of face value, a price of 98.00 means that the bond is selling for 98% of its face value of $1,000.00 and the bond discount is 2%.

BREAKING DOWN 'Bond Discount'

Bonds trade at a discount to par value for a number of reasons. Bonds on the secondary market with fixed coupons will trade at discounts when market interest rates rise. While the investor receives the same coupon, the bond is discounted to match prevailing market yields. Discounts also occur when bond supply exceeds demand, when the bond's credit rating is lowered, or when the perceived risk of default increases. Conversely, falling interest rates or an improved credit rating may cause a bond to trade at a premium.

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RELATED FAQS
  1. What determines the price of a bond in the open market?

    Learn more about some of the factors that influence the valuation of bonds on the open market, and why bond prices and yields ... Read Answer >>
  2. Will the price of a premium bond be higher or lower than its par value?

    Find out why the selling price of a premium bond is always higher than its par value, including how changing interest rates ... Read Answer >>
  3. How does face value differ from the price of a bond?

    Discover how bonds are traded as investment securities and understand the various terms used in bond trading, including par ... Read Answer >>
  4. What happens to the price of a premium bond as it approaches maturity?

    Learn how bonds trade in regard to premiums and discounts, and how bond prices shift closer to par value as bonds approach ... Read Answer >>
  5. Should investors focus more on the current yield or face value of a bond?

    Find out when investors should focus on a bond's current yield versus its face value, including an example of how current ... Read Answer >>
  6. What does it mean when a bond is selling at a premium? Is it a good investment?

    When the terms premium and discount are used in reference to bonds, they are telling investors that the purchase price of ... Read Answer >>
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