Moody’s reported that its global speculative-grade default rate stood at 4.4% at the end of Q4’16, according to its own release. It sees the rate falling to 3.0% by December 2017. Moody’s puts the historical average default rate at 4.2% since 1983. In 2016, the number of defaults totaled 142, the highest amount since 2009. The U.S. speculative-grade default rate stood at 5.6% at the end of Q4’16. It sees the U.S. rate falling to 3.8% by December 2017. The default rate on senior loans stood at 2.06% in December, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence.