11: Fundamentals of Credit Analysis

Course Description

This course provides a thorough introduction to credit analysis, particularly in regard to corporate bonds. Students will learn how to distinguish between bond issues with differing degrees of credit risk to determine if a suitable risk premium is being offered. The course concludes with a case study considering adding Rio Tinto bonds to an existing investment portfolio. Bloomberg credit analysis tools are introduced to help evaluate the suitability of the sample bond given the investment policy presented in the case.


1: Evaluate the risks and benefits of investing in corporate bonds.

2: Analyze systematic and unsystematic risks in relation to top down and bottom up investment approaches.

3: Implement the ‘4 Cs’ of credit analysis: capacity, collateral, covenants, and character.

4: Understand the pros and cons of relying on credit rating agencies and apply credit analysis techniques in a sample case illustrating the use of Bloomberg credit analysis tools.


$995 for students, governments and non-profits

$1650 for corporate and for-profit entities

Group pricing for teams of 5 or more

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Course Requirements


There are no prerequisites for this course.

Program Level


Field of Study


Credit Hours


Course Instructor

Gregory Balls, CFA

Portfolio Manager and Analyst, FTN Financial Main Street Advisors


Greg Balls is a Portfolio Manager and Analyst at FTN Financial Main Street Advisors, and has worked in the industry since 2008. He assists with implementing investment strategy and with publishing economic and market updates. Before joining the firm, Greg was a portfolio manager for the State of Florida, where he managed the Short Duration portfolio and assisted with managing the Liquidity portfolio. He also managed portfolios for municipalities, corporations, trusts, and high net-worth individuals at Cantango Capital Advisors, a subsidiary of Zions Bancorp. Prior to his employment at Cantango, Greg worked in the Capital Markets Department at Zions Bank, where he specialized in buying and selling fixed-income securities for institutional clients. Greg received a dual bachelor's degree in Finance and Economics from Utah State University. Greg is a member of the CFA Society of Nevada and holds the designation of Chartered Financial Analyst. He holds the FINRA Series 65 license.