Purchasing Dutch government bonds

A loan issued by the Dutch State is an investment with a low risk profile and a high credit rating. If you are interested in purchasing a Dutch government bond, you will find relevant information on this page.

Erasmusbrug in Rotterdam
Image: ©Nationale Beeldbank / Outlook 2018
Erasmusbrug in Rotterdam

Where can I buy a Dutch government bond as an individual?

Individuals and investors can purchase Dutch government bonds through their bank, investment adviser or broker. Dutch government bonds are traded on the Euronext Amsterdam stock exchange.

Government bonds can also be part of an investment fund. By participating in an investment fund, it is possible to invest indirectly in Dutch government securities.

Your bank, investment advisor or broker can also answer your questions about buying a Dutch government bond and check whether buying a Dutch government bond is a suitable investment for you.

What does a Dutch government bond cost and what does it yield?

When you buy a government bond, you pay the market price, being the current price of the government bond at that time. This price changes over time due to supply and demand. Changes in supply and demand are caused by many factors, such as the economic outlook, budgetary developments, developments in financial markets and interest rate movements. Because prices change continuously, an investor can realise price gains or losses between buying and selling a government bond. The price change reflects the difference between the current market interest rates and the coupon rate of the bond. If the current market interest rate is lower than the coupon rate, the price of the relevant government bond will exceed 100%.

A holder of a government bond receives the coupon rate annually - depending on the maturity date - in January or July for the entire previous year. The coupon rate is the remuneration paid by the State to investors. When you buy a Dutch government bond, you also pay the accrued coupon interest up to the date of purchase. This amounts to paying the market price plus accrued coupon interest from the last coupon payment. Conversely, if you sell a government bond, you will receive the market price plus the accrued coupon interest. On the maturity date of the government bond, the principal will be repaid in addition to the last coupon interest. Due to low interest rates in recent years, Dutch government bonds have been issued with a coupon rate of 0%. If the coupon rate equals 0%, then there is no interest payment, neither during the term nor on the maturity date. Investing in Dutch government bonds involves risks.

Treasury bills (DTCs)

Besides long-term government bonds, the DSTA also issues treasury bills - Dutch Treasury Certificates (DTCs). These DTCs have a maturity of up to one (1) year. Treasury bills are zero coupon bonds meaning that one (1) amount is repaid at maturity (always 100% of the nominal value). The purchase price is the nominal value offset by the (discounted) interest to be reimbursed. No coupon payments are made in the interim.

Where can I find current price information?

A Dutch government bond is quoted as follows: "NETHER coupon end date". Take, for example, the following government bond "NETHER 0.5% 15/07/26". "NETHER" indicates that this is a Dutch government bond issued on the capital markets; a government bond with a maturity longer than one year. The "0.5%" section indicates the coupon rate of the government loan; in this case 0.5%. "15/07/26" indicates the maturity date of the government loan: this Dutch government bond matures on 15 July 2026.

A Dutch government bond can be purchased for any euro amount. For example, if you want to buy a government bond for €1000 face value, you will pay 1000 times the price of the loan. Current prices of government bonds can be found on the website of the Euronext Amsterdam stock exchange with about 15 minutes delay, and on MTS. You can also request a price from your bank, investment adviser or broker. 

Borrowing conditions

The borrowing conditions can be found via News & publications under Borrowing conditions. Conditions are available for both Dutch State Loans (DSLs) and Dutch State Treasury Certificates (DTCs.)