CATS

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CATS

Certificate of Accrual on Treasury Securities

A formerly-issued Treasury security whose coupons had been stripped by an intermediary. CATS therefore paid no interest. They were sold at a significant discount from par and matured at par. CATS fluctuated in price, sometimes dramatically, because changes in interest rates made them more or less desirable. CATS could be invested IRAs and other pension accounts; they were also exempt from state and local taxes. They were issued between 1982 and 1986, becoming obsolete when the U.S. Treasury began issuing its own stripped bonds. See also: Zero-Coupon Bonds.

Certificate of Accrual on Treasury Securities (CATS).

CATS are US Treasury zero-coupon bonds that are sold at deep discount to par, or face value. Like other zeros, the interest isn't actually paid during the bond's term but accumulates so that you receive face value at maturity.

You can use CATS in your long-term portfolio to provide money for college tuition or retirement. For example, you may purchase them in a tax-deferred IRA or a tax-free Roth IRA or Coverdell education savings account (ESA).

As with other zeros, CATS prices can be volatile, so you risk losing some of your principal if you sell before maturity. And like other federal government issues, the interest is free of state and local income tax but subject to federal income tax.