Monday, July 8, 2013

About Bearer Bonds

We are constantly asked for histories of ownership of bearer bonds. In all our 34 years of buying uncanceled bonds, such histories have never been available. It is extremely rare that owners would ever save receipts of purchases of bonds dated in the late 19th Century to the 1940’s. It is important to stress that all these bonds are “BEARER” bonds, not Registered Bonds.

There is no official records that could verify the ownership history of bonds. One could compare a “BEARER” bond to a $20 bill in one’s pocket. It would be rather absurd to ask for a history of ownership of such a piece of paper money. Such demands of histories only encourage legitimate owners of bonds to simply make up histories which cannot be proven or unproven.

Bearer bonds were unregistered negotiable financial instruments up which interest and principal were payable to the holder of the bond. As the ownership of a bearer bond was not registered with any financial institution, interest and principal would be paid to the holder of the bond regardless of who originally purchased the bond.

Coupons were attached to each bond, and individual coupons represented a single interest payment. The holder of the bearer bond would submit a coupon on a specific date to the issuer of the bond or a designated paying agent, such as a bank, to receive the interest payment. Payment due dates were normally detailed on the bond certificate and it was the usual practice that interest would be at six month intervals.

Bearer bonds were advantageous to certain investors who perhaps wished to shield their finances from the clutches of the tax authorities as owner’s details would not appear on any financial records.

Bearer bonds were easily negotiated between parties as the owner was not required to register any transfer of ownership.

For more information visit our web site,, or call George LaBarre at 1-800-717-9529.

George H. LaBarre Galleries - Collectible Stocks and Bonds and Old Stocks and Bonds
A foreign antique stock and bond company.

*Source: Historic Foreign Bonds of China by John M. Thomson (2012)

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