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Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

c.1500, from French tranche "a cutting," from trancher, trencher "to cut," Old French trenchier (see trench). Economic sense is from 1930.


n. 1 A slice, section or portion. 2 (context finance English) One of a set of classes or risk maturities which compose a multiple-class security, such as a CMO or REMIC; a class of bonds; collateralized mortgage obligations are structured with several tranches of bonds that have various maturities.


n. a portion of something (especially money)


In structured finance, a tranche is one of a number of related securities offered as part of the same transaction. The word tranche is French for slice, section, series, or portion, and is cognate to English trench ('ditch'). In the financial sense of the word, each bond is a different slice of the deal's risk. Transaction documentation (see indenture) usually defines the tranches as different "classes" of notes, each identified by letter (e.g., the Class A, Class B, Class C securities) with different bond credit ratings (ratings).

The term tranche is used in fields of finance other than structured finance (such as in straight lending, where multi-tranche loans are commonplace), but the term's use in structured finance may be singled out as particularly important. Use of "tranche" as a verb is limited almost exclusively to this field.

Usage examples of "tranche".

In memory of her he has quartered his own arms with those of Des Touches, which are: party couped, tranche and taille or and sinople, on the latter two eagles argent.

When the walls of the new palace started rising, I knew Cyprianus was due to take on a very large tranche of general masons, plus stone-cutters to shape and face the ashlar blocks, scaffolders, barrow boys and mortar-mixers.