Credit Spread Option

AAA

DEFINITION of 'Credit Spread Option'

A financial derivative contract that transfers credit risk from one party to another. An initial premium is paid by the buyer in exchange for potential cash flows if a given credit spread changes from its current level.

The buyer of a credit spread option will receive cash flows if the credit spread between two specific benchmarks widens or narrows. Credit spread options come in the form of both calls and puts, allowing both long and short credit positions.

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Credit Spread Option'

Credit spread options can be issued by holders of a specific company's debt to hedge against the risk of a negative credit event. The buyer of the credit spread option (call) assumes all or a portion of the risk of default, and will pay the option seller if the spread between the company's debt and a benchmark level (such as LIBOR) grows.

Options and other derivatives based on credit spreads are vital tools for managing the risks associated with lower-rated bonds and debt.


RELATED TERMS
  1. LIBOR

    LIBOR or ICE LIBOR (previously BBA LIBOR) is a benchmark rate ...
  2. Cat Spread

    A cat spread is a type of derivative traded on the Chicago Board ...
  3. Spread

    1. The difference between the bid and the ask price of a security ...
  4. Junk Bond

    A colloquial term for a high-yield or non-investment grade bond. ...
  5. Hedge Ratio

    1. A ratio comparing the value of a position protected via a ...
  6. Perfect Hedge

    A position undertaken by an investor that would eliminate the ...
Related Articles
  1. Options & Futures

    Are Derivatives Safe For Retail Investors?

    These vehicles have gotten a bad rap in the press. Find out whether they deserve it.
  2. Options & Futures

    Vertical Bull and Bear Credit Spreads

    This trading strategy is an excellent limited-risk strategy that can be used with equity as well as commodity and futures options.
  3. Options & Futures

    Iron Condors: Wing It To Maximum Profit

    Understanding the right way to execute an iron condor can increase potential returns and limit risk.
  4. Options & Futures

    Understanding Option Pricing

    Take advantage of stock movements by getting to know these derivatives.
  5. Bonds & Fixed Income

    Advanced Bond Concepts

    Learn the complex concepts and calculations for trading bonds including bond pricing, yield, term structure of interest rates and duration.
  6. Options & Futures

    Options -- Accessing Stakes In Apple At Less Cost

    Finding Apple stock costly to trade? Here are multiple ways to trade it through low-cost Apple options.
  7. Options & Futures

    These Are The Top Brokerage Firms For Options Trading

    Trading options? Here is the list of the best brokerage firms for options trading, with features, functionality, and brokerage rates.
  8. Fundamental Analysis

    What are the most common issues with Serial Correlation in stocks?

    Read about the concept of serial correlation in stock returns, and learn why market analysts are divided about the efficacy of trading based on stock patterns.
  9. Options & Futures

    What is a volatility smile?

    Discover what options traders mean when they refer to a "volatility smile," and learn why a volatility smile's existence perplexes many investors and analysts.
  10. Bonds & Fixed Income

    How do I calculate yield to maturity of a zero coupon bond?

    Find out how to calculate the yield to maturity for a zero coupon bond, and see why this calculation is more simple than a bond with a coupon.

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Portfolio Turnover

    A measure of how frequently assets within a fund are bought and sold by the managers. Portfolio turnover is calculated by ...
  2. Commercial Paper

    An unsecured, short-term debt instrument issued by a corporation, typically for the financing of accounts receivable, inventories ...
  3. Federal Funds Rate

    The interest rate at which a depository institution lends funds maintained at the Federal Reserve to another depository institution ...
  4. Fixed Asset

    A long-term tangible piece of property that a firm owns and uses in the production of its income and is not expected to be ...
  5. Break-Even Analysis

    An analysis to determine the point at which revenue received equals the costs associated with receiving the revenue. Break-even ...
  6. Key Performance Indicators - KPI

    A set of quantifiable measures that a company or industry uses to gauge or compare performance in terms of meeting their ...
Trading Center