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Discarded assets that are considered useless or of little value. During most periods, so-called junk bonds (lower credit quality, higher-yielding bonds) have given investors a net rate of return two percentage points higher than the rate that could be earned on “investment grade,” bonds with high-quality credit ratings. [1]

The value of speculative bonds is affected to a higher degree than investment grade bonds by the possibility of default. For example, in a recession interest rates may drop, and the drop in interest rates tends to increase the value of investment grade bonds; however, a recession tends to increase the possibility of default in speculative-grade bonds.

In a leveraged buyout (LBO) an acquirer would issue Junk bonds to help pay for an acquisition and then use the target's cash flow to help pay the debt over time. [1]

From 1842, old or discarded articles of any kind. [2]


  1. A Random Walk Down Wall Street: The Time-Tested Strategy for Successful Investing By Burton Gordon Malkiel ISBN-10: 0393062457 pg305
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