American corporate bond markets are up against foreign markets

U.S. savings bonds

TEXT OF STORY

JEREMY HOBSON: The markets for corporate bonds are sending positive signals about the U.S. economy. For the first time in nearly 15 years, it's cheaper for American companies to borrow money than it is for foreign companies to borrow money.

From London, Marketplace's Stephen Beard reports.


STEPHEN BEARD: Usually, American companies have to pay more than their European or Japanese rivals when they borrow money from investors. That's because on average their stock is longer-dated. In other words, investors have to wait longer to get their money back. But now, according to figures from Bank of America, the situation has changed. Investors are now prepared to earn less on the American company bonds than on those from Japan and Europe. The reason -- says Howard Wheeldon of the BGC group -- that the U.S. looks in better shape than the others.

HOWARD WHEELDON: Spending has risen. There's no worry about inflation in the U.S. and the general scene looks positive in terms of growth being extended through 2011.

Meanwhile -- he says -- Europe seems likely to be weighed down by the problem of government debt well into 2012.

In London this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

About the author

Stephen Beard is the European bureau chief and provides daily coverage of Europe’s business and economic developments for the entire Marketplace portfolio.

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