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CDO tranch before and in crisis

hey everyone, i have a quote from some study materials saying as follows: ” before crisis, hedge fund is in a long position of mezzanine while short  equity tranch”. Doesnt riskier asset packed in the equity tranch bring about higher yield during peaceful time?? 

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The issue was in correlation among tranches which had being disrupted in crisis and created high losses to those funds.

play it again, Sam