How to Determine What Bearer Bond Is Worth

By: Kevin Owen

Bearer bonds have a face value on the principal investment, as well as accrued interest.

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Bearer bonds are unregistered investment securities that are owned by whoever possesses them. As these bonds are payable to the person bearing them, they are as liquid as cash. Because the bonds are negotiable without the need to record a transaction, as stocks or registered bonds require, the issuance of bearer bonds was made unlawful in the United States in 1982 due to concerns that these bond instruments were used to evade taxes and launder money.


Step 1

Read the information printed on the bearer bond. Most bearer bonds have a face value printed conspicuously on the front of the document stating the principal value of the investment.

Step 2

Contact the issuing authority for information about the investment. If the value of your bearer bond is not stated in monetary terms, but rather is valued in precious metal or a commodity, you might need to contact a bank or another investment institution for specific information about the value of the bond.

Step 3

Redeem any interest that the bearer bond accrued with the issuing financial institution. Most bearer bonds have small coupon tabs attached to them that are to be clipped and submitted annually for interest payments. The interest is generally accrued at a regular rate, which is usually noted on the bond.


  • Closely guard your bearer bonds. There is no way to recover the value of the investment if they are lost or stolen.


About the Author

Kevin Owen has been a professional writer since 2005. He served as an editor for the American Bar Association's "Administrative Law Review." Owen is an employment litigator in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area and practices before various state and federal trial and appellate courts. He earned his Juris Doctor from American University.

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