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What Is Debt?

Dec 28, 2007
Debts, What Are They?

Debt is something that is owed to someone else. An individual person or company / business owing a debt is called a debtor. The entity that is owed the debt is is labeled a creditor. Debt is primarily used to borrow purchasing power with a promise to pay back at an agreed upon time. Most businesses / companies use debt as a tool of their overall corporate finance strategy.

What types of debt are available

There are numerous types of debt obligations. They include loans, bonds, mortgages and promissory notes. It is common to borrow large sums for major purchases, such as a mortgage, and pay it back with an agreed premium interest rate over time, or all at once at a later date (balloon payment). The amount of money outstanding is usually called a debt. The debt will increase through time if it is not repaid faster than it grows. In some systems of economics this effect is termed usury, in others, the term "usury" refers only to an excessive rate of interest, in excess of a reasonable profit for the risk accepted.

Big organizations can issue debt in the form of securities, known as bonds. Each bond entitles the holder to interest and principal repayments. Bonds are traded in the bond markets, and depending on the rating are relatively safe investments.
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