Collateralized debt obligations or mortgage pools are generally considered examples of securities found in a credit market.
A credit market is often identified as the market for governments, companies and entrepreneurs looking to raise funds through some sort of debt guarantee strategy. This would include the issuance of investment grade bonds as well as other securities such as commercial papers and junk bonds. Offerings such as collateralized debt obligations or mortgage pools are also generally considered to be examples of securities found in a credit market.
In reality, a credit market is actually a collective name for several different types of investment markets. An example of a credit market is the bond market. This particular market includes bonds issued by corporations, municipalities, and even federal governments. Considered a relatively safe investment, these types of credit investments provide a lower but reliable rate of return without the need to take too much risk. The popularity of bonds as an investment option contributes to increasing the attractiveness of the credit market in general, making it one of the largest investment marketing segments in the world.
Along with bonds, mortgage pools are another popular option. While there are some variations on how these pools are structured, the basic idea is to make use of mortgages as the underlying securities for an investment option. Investors earn a return based on the amount of interest generated by the underlying securities. While they pose a greater risk than most bond issues, mortgage pools tend to be a good option as long as the economy remains stable.
Mutual funds are also considered an offer in the credit market. Funds of this type can be structured to primarily attract corporate investors or targeted at individual investors who gradually increase their interest in the fund, sometimes through an employer-sponsored mutual fund program. The actual structure of the fund will vary, based on applicable government regulations and the type of investors the fund is trying to attract.
The actual size of a credit market varies from one nation to another. Nations such as the United States and the United Kingdom have traditionally enjoyed markets where there is a wide range of investment options available to investors of all sizes and types. This is generally seen as a healthy situation as it encourages investment activity and helps keep the overall economy healthy. Smaller nations may or may not offer the same range of investment opportunities. It is not uncommon for a nation emerging from financial difficulties to actively but systematically seek expansion of the credit market as a means of stabilizing its economy and gradually improving the standard of living of its citizens.