Introduction to Bond Markets Qualification (IBMQ)

New IBMQ online course starting 1 August

The Introduction to Bond Market Qualification (IBMQ) is an introductory level programme intended for anyone seeking a sound foundation in the analysis of fixed income securities. The syllabus offers an overview of fixed income market products and participants and explains the key features of fixed income securities including government bonds, corporate bonds and many more. In addition, it provides candidates with the basic quantitative tools they will need to begin analysing fixed income securities.

Sample Module


By completing the programme you will: 

  • acquire a sound understanding of the risk and return characteristics of fixed-income securities, including sovereign bonds, investment-grade and high-yield corporate bonds, inflation-linked bonds, securitisations, and covered bonds
  • learn how to use and interpret market-standard measures of interest rate risk and credit spreads, as well as how to apply these measures to construct and evaluate trades that express views about the level of interest rates, the shape of the yield curve, and relative value in credit risky bonds
  • learn how inflation-linked bonds protect investors from inflation risk and provide opportunities for trading views on expected inflation, and how securitisations and covered bonds expand opportunities for investors while diversifying financing sources for financial institutions
  • learn how bonds are issued and traded, and how regulatory changes and technological development are transforming fixed-income markets

Who should study the programme?

The course is intended for anyone who requires a firm grounding in global bond markets and fixed-income analysis as part of their professional development.  It is particularly directed at candidates who are entering or have recently entered positions in fixed-income markets, or whose responsibilities require an understanding of fixed-income securities and markets.  This might include, for example, professionals whose primary responsibilities are legal, regulatory or technology-related, as well as those working directly in fixed-income trading and investment management.

The IBMQ may also serve as a useful introduction to bond markets for candidates who intend subsequently to study for the ICMA Fixed Income Certificate (FIC).

The names of successful candidates will be included in our list of certificate holders.

Course Trainer

David Oakes

Test your knowledge

Unsure if this is the right course for you? Take a short sample exam.

The course syllabus is divided into the following key topic areas:

•    Fixed Income Markets
•    Fundamental Features of Bonds
•    Bond Types and Market Sectors

Analysing Bonds
•    Bond Price Quotation and Accrued Interest
•    Calculating Accrued Interest
•    Bond Price and Yield
•    Calculating Yield to Maturity

Government Bonds and the Yield Curve
•    The Yield Curve
•    Monetary Policy and the Yield Curve
•    Interest Rate Risk
•    Trading the Yield Curve

Corporate Bonds
•    Credit Risk in Corporate Bonds
•    Credit Ratings and Credit Spreads
•    Securitisation
•    Covered Bonds

Inflation-Linked, Green, and Social and Sustainability Bonds
•    Why Investors Care About Inflation
•    Inflation-Linked Bonds
•    Green Bonds
•    Social and Sustainability Bonds

Issuing and Trading Bonds
•    Issuing Bonds in the Primary Market
•    Secondary Market Trading
•    Regulation

The exam consists of 50 multiple choice questions of which candidates must answer a minimum of 30 questions correctly, with a score of 45 or more earning a distinction.

If you’re taking the classroom-based course, end-of-day review sessions are held at the end of the first two days and prior to the exam on day three to prepare for the exam and assist candidates with the course content.

If you’re taking the online course you have six months in which to study the material and book an online, fully invigilated exam. You may take the exam within 12 months of registering for the course, but must book the exam within six months of registering.

Attend the course in a format that suits your schedule.

Online Course - Register now to take the IBMQ on a digital learning platform

Delegates who sign up to online courses will have access for 6 months to enable them to take advantage of the additional online resources, discussion boards and other functions of our new digital learning platform.

Online courses start on the 1st of each month.
1 July - Start Date

1 August - Start Date

Online course fees

The following special introductory price will be available until 1 October 2020:

ICMA Members: £800 + VAT (if applicable)
Non Members: £1,100 + VAT (if applicable)

Costs include full access to the online campus, associated learning materials and the examination fee. Please note that payment for online courses must be received before the start of the course.

As an indicative guide, we would recommend a total of 90 study hours is required to go through the material. Please note this is an approximate guide only.


Classroom Course

In light of ongoing international concerns with respect to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and in the interest of maintaining the health of our members, delegates and staff, all classroom based courses are currently on hold and will be rescheduled as soon as the situation normalises.

Please register your interest for this course and we will send you details if this course can be confirmed.

October 2020 - Date to be confirmed

Classrom course fees

ICMA Members: £2,250+ VAT (if applicable)
Non Members: £2,750+ VAT (if applicable)

For security reasons, delegates who have not registered in advance will not be admitted to the classroom format of this course.  Delegates will be required to provide photo identification on arrival, to ensure entry.


Should you have any queries, please contact

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