Updated July 19, 2023
What is Hybrid Securities?
The term “hybrid securities” describes financial instruments that combine characteristics of both equities and bonds. These securities generate returns similar to the performance of a company, like equities, or provide a stable rate of return, like bonds. In essence, hybrid securities offer guaranteed payments similar to bonds while also exhibiting the potential for capital appreciation like stocks.
The two most popularly known categories of securities are equities (variable income securities)and bonds (fixed income securities). The purchase of equities offers partial ownership of a company, while bonds mean lending money to a company and receiving interest as a form of fixed income. Now, hybrid securities are a combination of both security types (equities and bonds), and their return is based on the performance of the underlying assets.
The features of hybrid securities are as follows:
- They usually offer a higher rate of return than pure fixed-income securities, but the return is lower than pure variable-income securities.
- They believe that hybrid securities are less risky than pure variable-income securities but riskier than pure fixed-income securities.
- Investors can use these securities to participate in a company’s capital raising program without having either the risk of a stock or less liquidity of a bond.
Types of Hybrid Securities
- Preferred Stocks: In this type of hybrid securities, investors enjoy seniority to common stockholders and, as such, receive dividends before them. The quantum of tips for preferred stocks usually differs from common stockholders. In case of insolvency, the businesses are obligated to repay the preferred stockholders before the common stockholders. In addition, companies sometimes provide preferred stockholders the option to convert their holdings into common stocks.
- In-kind toggle Notes: This type helps companies that are undergoing a liquidity crunch in raising capital to fund the short-term liquidity gap. In such securities, the issuing company can capitalize on the interest payment that results in additional debt. In-kind toggle notes come with the provision to delay the interest payment during serious liquidity shortfall.
- Convertible Bonds: This type is a fixed-income instrument with a call option on some equity. Effectively, the investors of these securities can convert their holdings into a predetermined number of company stocks. In fact, in some cases, the investors also have the option to convert the fixed income instrument of one company into a fixed number of stores of some other company. Convertible bonds generally offer a lower rate of return compared to traditional fixed-income bonds, and the interest rate differential represents the premium that convertible bondholders pay for the call option.
Risks of Hybrid Securities
Some of the significant risks associated with hybrid securities are as follows:
- There is a huge liquidity risk in such securities as the trading volumes can vary significantly, driven by their demand and supply in the market.
- The volatility in market price exposes the expected return to unpredictability, making it exceptionally unpredictable.
- If the issuing company experiences a loss of earnings, other senior debt obligations can significantly diminish the interest payments on these securities.
- The return on these securities is also subject to the risk of regulatory changes or changes in tax laws.
Some of the major advantages are as follows:
- It typically provides a relatively higher return compared to other senior obligations because they are often subordinate in the capital structure.
- Hybrid securities exhibit relatively lower volatility than the overall market as they offer stable and fixed distribution of market returns.
- Since hybrid securities are not required to adhere to equities or bonds rigidly, they might have a diversified risk profile.
Some of the major disadvantages are as follows:
- Investing in hybrid securities is regarded as more complex compared to investments in either equities or bonds.
- Due to its subordinated position to other senior obligations, hybrid securities can experience substantial losses in the event of the issuing company’s bankruptcy.
Essential Terms About Hybrid Securities
- Reset Date: It refers to the date on which the hybrid securities’ terms and conditions (interest rate, next reset date, etc.) may change.
- Cumulative Dividend: In this system, if the issuing company cannot pay the dividend in a particular period, it gets added to the next dividend payment.
- Non-Cumulative Dividend: If the issuing company cannot pay the dividend in a particular period, it is waived off.
- Redeemable Securities: In this case, the holder of the securities has the option to sell it back to the issuing company at the issue price.
- Non-Redeemable Securities: In this case, the holder of the guards doesn’t have the option to sell back.
So, the concept is new, a mix of equities and bonds. Companies prefer using these financial instruments to raise capital, given their various advantages. Investors also fancy hybrid securities as they offer a relatively fruitful balance of risk and reward.
We hope that this EDUCBA information on “Hybrid Securities” was beneficial to you. You can view EDUCBA’s recommended articles for more information.