What exactly is macro rates / 'rates trading'?

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by morelivas, Oct 2, 2011.

  1. morelivas


    When someone refers to a macro rates desk, what sort of trading does that involve? from my very rudimentary understanding its basically smaller scale global macro, but usually when i hear the phrase it pertains to a trading desk - so how does that work?

    i'm assuming US treasuries are involved but in what sense? holding outright long positions for weeks? buying the 10yr cash / short 30yr futures spread if you expect the curve to steepen? are macro rates desks day trading treasuries against each other, looking for arbitrage or holding outright treasury positions for a long time? what sort of time period does it refer to? do all desks or only the legit ones trade int'l sovereign bonds as well? and how does the currency component fit in?

    this might make zero sense cause i really dont know what im talking about. but im very curious, so any clarification is appreciated. if someone could point me to a legit resource/book (other than google.com) that would be great too