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Corporate America partied like never before on cheap money over the past decade, and now comes the hangover.

Companies will need to refinance an estimated US$4 trillion of bonds over the next five years—about two-thirds of all their outstanding debt, according to Wells Fargo Securities. This has investors concerned. Rising rates mean it will cost more to pay for unprecedented amounts of borrowing, which could push balance sheets toward a tipping point. And on top of that, many see the economy slowing down at the same time the rollovers are peaking.

“If more of your cash flow is spent into servicing your debt and not trying to grow your company, that could, over time, if enough companies are doing that, lead to economic contraction,” said Zachary Chavis, a portfolio manager at Sage Advisory Services Ltd. in Austin, Texas. “A lot of people are worried that could happen in the next two years.”

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