Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Sovereign CDS notionals - an update

Here is a quick update on sovereign CDS net notional outstanding. The chart below shows the net for SovX (index of sovereign CDS) and its components. The notional for "single name CDS" (the components) has been on a decline. Part of that decrease was the Greek CDS going away, but some represents a decline in trading. Less "excitement", less volume - for now.

CDS net notional  (Source: Credit Suisse)

Here is what the notional looked like recently as a percentage of total debt outstanding for Western European nations. As expected, Ireland and Portugal are at the top. The Scandinavian nations are up there as well, but the ranking is a bit skewed because the overall amount of debt of these nations is low on a relative basis.

CDS net notional /debt (Source: Credit Suisse)

This shows again how low the CDS notionals are relative to the overall sovereign debt outstanding. But it's important to track these rankings as an indicator of where the market participants are placing bets.

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