A rebound in highly-rated debt issuance was a feature of last week's primary market calendar as almost half of the $11.6 billion of investment grade issuance was rated double-A or better. Once again several sizeable sovereign issues were behind the boost in average ratings continuing a trend of very heavy issuance by this sector. There has been almost $30 billion of supra/sovereign issuance so far in 2003 and 36% of the primary market year-to-date has been in deals rated double-A or higher (versus 30% for all of 2002). Hence, the year's issuance volumes continue to look heavy with $94.5 billion of investment-grade deals having come to market so far, which is slightly ahead of the pace last year.
Analysis by CreditSights, Inc., an independent online credit research platform. Call (212) 340-3888 or visit www.CreditSights.com for more information