Q: What do the distressed debt market and the Japanese puffer-fish have in common? A: They're both irresistible - but highly toxic

Distressed debt investors gearing up for a bumper year should take note of the name of Babson's new credit fund, Fugu, after the deadly Japanese puffer-fish - a prized delicacy that can be lethal if not prepared correctly. Philip Moore reports on the new pitfalls awaiting a growing mass of investors angling to get involved in distressed debt this year

When; not if. That is the clear consensus on the outlook for a rise in defaults in Europe over the coming 12-18 months, bringing in their wake a surge in corporate restructurings and a rapid expansion in the distressed debt market. That will come as a welcome, if belated, relief for many investors that have prematurely built up positions in dedicated distressed debt funds over the past year or so. In many cases, the resilience and benign credit climate has forced those funds to sit on piles of

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