On the Fritz

Cinderella finds her prince


The modern high-yield bond market which began a quarter-century ago is the offspring of a successful, if sometimes rocky, marriage. Mutual funds seeking maximum income hooked up with basic-industry companies fleeing from the restrictive covenants imposed by private lenders. As a rule, fixed coupons were a trait of this union’s issue.

Floating-rate instruments traditionally held little appeal for investors who had no specific, interest rate-sensitive liabilities to match. The upward-sloping yield

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