Two Very Strange Financial Stories

20-Year Mortgages Hit Zero for First Time in Danish Rate History

In Denmark’s $495 billion mortgage-backed covered bond market, another milestone was reached on Wednesday as Nordea Bank Abp said it will start offering 20-year fixed-rate loans that charge no interest.

The development follows an announcement earlier in the week by Jyske Bank A/S, which said it will start issuing 10-year mortgages at a coupon of minus 0.5%. Danes can also now get 30-year mortgages at 0.5%, and Nordea recently adjusted its prospectus to allow for home loans up to 30 years at negative interest rates.


“It’s never been cheaper to borrow,” Lise Nytoft Bergmann, chief analyst at Nordea’s home finance unit in Denmark, said in an email. “We expect this to contribute to driving home prices higher.”

Though good news for homeowners, Bergmann said the development is “almost eerie.”

“It’s an uncomfortable thought that there are investors who are willing to lend money for 30 years and get just 0.5% in return,” she said. “It shows how scared investors are of the current situation in the financial markets, and that they expect it to take a very long time before things improve.”

I don’t know what to make of that.

But I do know that the people in this next story feel like they’ve won the lottery.

‘It’s crazy’: Chase Bank forgiving all debt owed by its Canadian credit card customers

Credit card rewards expert Patrick Sojka said Chase likely concluded that debt forgiveness was ultimately cheaper than continuing to collect credit card payments in Canada.

“They’re still probably paying taxes, paying accountants, and for them, they just probably worked it out and [said], ‘Let’s just forgive the debt and fully get out of the country.'”

But he’s stumped as to why the bank didn’t instead opt to sell the debt to a third-party debt collector, which would allow Chase to recoup some cash.

“It is definitely a head-scratcher, for sure,” said Sojka, the founder of Rewards Canada, a site that tracks reward programs.

Both of those stories are head-scratchers. Money not acting the way it should.

What’s going on that I’m missing?

Previously here:

Tick Tick Tick
Is This A “What’s Next?”
Midtown Manhattan Power Outage: “What’s Next?”
2020: Year Of The Ant
2020 Is Coming. Be An Ant. Not A Grasshopper.

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