The Microstructure of the Brazilian Market for Corporate Bonds

Antonio Gledson de Carvalho, Felipe Tumenas Marques


Purpose – The Brazilian government approved regulations to foster the corporate bond market. In 2009, Instruction 476 of the Comissão de Valores Mobiliários (the Brazilian capital market regulator) relaxed the requirements for issuing bonds. In 2011, Law 12,431 created infrastructure bonds, which give individuals tax exemptions. Since then, aggregate proceeds have more than tripled. We describe the Brazilian bond market and the characteristics of issues and issuers; and critically evaluate this evolution.


Design/methodology/approach – Descriptive analysis. Data on aggregate issuances; bond characteristics (proceeds, maturity, yields, underwriting); issuer characteristics; secondary market (trading); performance (default and renegotiation rates); and allocation of issues. 


Findings – Bond issues are small and bonds present a short maturity. International agencies are the main ratings providers, using a Brazilian-adjusted rating scale. Fixed-yield bonds are rare. The vast majority of regular bonds are linked to the interbank offered interest rate (DI or CDI). Only two local universal banks dominate the underwriting activity. These banks and their related parties receive more than half of the aggregate allocation. Less than half of issues have an investment grade, and more than half are not rated at all. The incidence of ex-post credit events is most frequently in the form of renegotiations of bond terms. Strict defaults are also high. Liquidity for bonds in the secondary market is low.


Originality/value – To our knowledge, this is the first article to describe the microstructure of the Brazilian bond market.  


Brazil, bonds, bond market, capital markets


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