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Corporate Bond help

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Nov 13, 2008 3:24 am

I’m looking at corporate bonds and trying to figure if I’m understanding the risk correctly. (it’s not knowing what I don’t know that concerns me)

  I'm looking at a NYT issue that yields over 17%. It matures in about 16 mos. The issue was for $250MM and has a coupon of 4.50%. The CUSIP is 650111AD9.   What I'm trying to figure out is why it yields so much, when other NYT issues mature later and yield only 8%. Is it just having to do with how junior the debt is, or is it due to the fact that in normal times the NYT would just issue more debt to pay this off, but because the credit markets are frozen obtaining the $250MM is uncertain?   One other bond question: Is there a way to find out if an issue that matures actually paid off the principal on time?  I see bonds that come up within just a few days being discounted and I wanted to see if they paid off or not.   Any help is appreciated.