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University Bonds

October 15, 2012

In light of the £350million public bond offering by the University of Cambridge, here are the links to two articles written by me in September 2011 for Research Fortnight.

The first, ‘Demand would be enormous’, is a history of UK university bond issues, including information on private placements and bonds issued by special purpose vehicles for student accommodation developments (two aspects ignored in the mainstream coverage). It also includes some discussion of the Cambridge bond, which has been under consideration for a couple of years.

The second, ‘Borrowing Greatness‘, looks to the US and the University of California to see what a mature university bond market looks like. Bond financing there depends on the ability to raise tuition fees at will.

Bond boosters abound – but there are risks and they need to be discussed.

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