Should US treasuries or German Bunds be the proxy for the absence of risk in a period of prolonged monetary easing on both sides of the Atlantic? Many would argue that fixed-income investors should use Libor or the swaps rate as the risk-free rate, rather than the government bond rate, to guard against financial repression. There is now simply too much political interference in the sovereign bond markets for them to be the benchmark against which all other risks are measured. It is very important as an investor to be aware of how rigged the markets are, Balls warns. Central banks want to collapse the risk-free rate in order to force investors to take on more risk.