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  • The other way to spend the coming holiday

    Cinese New Year is on the way. It will be little more than a week before Hong Kong residents are forced to stay away from the office for three days. Perhaps they should reconsider.

    • 31 Jan 2013
  • EuroWeek view: Too many chiefs

    The loan market is groaning under the weight of ambitious lending banks hoping to participate at the very top level of transactions. But this surplus of senior lenders is symptomatic of a general overpopulation in the loan market that cannot last.

    • 29 Jan 2013
  • Bad news for eurozone banks

    US investors are threatening to leave money market funds if regulators impose a floating net asset value on the industry, which would damage an important source of dollar funding for eurozone banks. US regulators should be wary of the potential consequences of their actions.

    • 29 Jan 2013
  • Perps leave investors searching for redemption

    The bond market is awash with liquidity and rates are low. Issuers are understandably eager to lock in long-dated funding and perpetuals represent the ultimate opportunity. But investors have shown that structures with no step-up are a step too far.

    • 29 Jan 2013
  • Russian Railways shows how it should be done

    Swiss investors — especially institutional investors with targets to meet — are struggling with the low yield environment in Swiss francs. Emerging market paper is in vogue with investors hunting for yield. Issuers would be wise to follow Russian Railways’ example and take advantage of this trend.

    • 29 Jan 2013
  • Too many chiefs

    The loan market is groaning under the weight of ambitious lending banks hoping to participate at the very top level of transactions. But this surplus of senior lenders is symptomatic of a general overpopulation in the loan market that cannot last.

    • 29 Jan 2013
  • Instability Puts Slovenia On The Trading Radar

    Slovenia is not one of the more popular names in the sovereign credit default swap universe, but it has been seeing some activity in recent weeks due to political instability.

    • 25 Jan 2013
  • What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger

    Loan Ranger’s inflated sense of self-importance was on overdrive this week as it seemed that the entire emerging markets loan market had conspired — conspired! — to show Loan Ranger up.

    • 25 Jan 2013
  • Don’t get carried away

    Portugal, Spain, Madrid, Ireland, Italy and FADE have made resounding comebacks in the syndicated new issue market over the last month, but this sovereign crisis is not over.

    • 25 Jan 2013
  • RBS hits bump in path back to ‘normality’

    RBS faces a difficult task ensuring the strategy for its investment bank is not destroyed by the Libor scandal, writes David Rothnie.

    • 25 Jan 2013
  • Rob Ellison’s new do

    The capital markets artist formerly known as a ropey Leonardo DiCaprio is now in line to take on the moniker of the banker currently known as a youthful Rod Stewart. Yes, that’s right, UBS’s FIG DCM head, Rob Ellison, has a mullet in the making.

    • 25 Jan 2013
  • Snow woes

    The snow has pummelled London more fiercely than Eden Hazard removing a ballboy from his boot and sadly the EMTN world has not been immune.

    • 25 Jan 2013
  • Going nowhere, fast

    Turbo-Paralysis is the optimal way of describing the predicament in which the Subsistence Broker finds himself at present. There is an angry revving of the engine and some furious wheelspin which carries the promise of imminent progress but, despite the row, there is no vehicular locomotion and the greater the energy input, the deeper the Subsistence Broker sinks into the mudflats.

    • 25 Jan 2013
  • Credit crutch

    Figures are expected today (Friday) to show how much three year cash from the ECB’s longer term refinancing operation European banks are paying back at the first opportunity. The market will be gunning for a large number, and with good reason.

    • 25 Jan 2013
  • A management style that we can all drink to

    Kazuo Inamori has become, overnight, my hero. He impressed the wannabe deal-maker in me last year, when Japan Airlines — the company which he has run for the last three years — pulled off the biggest IPO in Asia. But he has moved up close to divinity with his latest revelation: he used beer to improve employee performance.

    • 25 Jan 2013
  • Rosneft’s powerful precedent

    State-owned Russian oil firm Rosneft provided emerging market loans bankers with a conundrum this week when it requested a margin cut to the second tranche of its jumbo $33.75bn TNK-BP takeover facility.

    • 25 Jan 2013
  • Issuers should grab hold of Dubai and Darby’s coat-tails

    The sukuk market has had a very quiet start to the year, compared with 2012. Until Tuesday, domestic deals in Malaysia and Saudi Arabia were all that had appeared. That has all changed with Dubai’s quickfire sovereign benchmark and a multicurrency sukuk programme from Malaysia’s Sime Darby. The hope is that these will get the Islamic finance pipeline flowing again.

    • 22 Jan 2013
  • Building bridges: in vogue M&A structure that could leave firms out in the cold

    The possibility of bridge-to-bond loan facilities in CEEMEA has got the region's M&A bankers rubbing their hands with glee. Finally there might be a way to encourage dormant companies to spend again. But bankers should be careful. Focusing too much on this model could put the brakes on investment.

    • 22 Jan 2013
  • Must the Portuguese choose now to join the comeback club?

    The clamour for, and subsequent success of, Spain’s 10 year syndication may prove to be a landmark in the European sovereign debt crisis. But if Portugal tries to follow with a deal of its own, it will be an exercise in lily-gilding at best. At worst, it will be an unnecessary setback for peripheral sovereign bonds.

    • 22 Jan 2013
  • Wake up, London — Brexit is no longer unthinkable

    David Cameron will announce tomorrow that the UK is now heading for a referendum on quitting the EU. Leaving the union would be the biggest threat to London’s financial markets for decades. While europhiles slept, euroscepticism has grown strong in the UK. It’s time it was properly challenged – with the facts.

    • 22 Jan 2013
  • It's the credit, stupid

    Market conditions are strong and it seems that almost any FIG issuer can do a deal. But that doesn't mean they can take liberties. Investors can be forgetful, but more often they remember when they have been taken for granted.

    • 22 Jan 2013
  • Japan ECM ready to shine

    Japan has not been a source of much hope for those in the financial markets in recent years, but equity analysts and investors are starting to become more bullish on the country. It may be too early to break out the champagne, but ECM bankers look set for a good year in a country that rarely offers much in the way of dealflow.

    • 22 Jan 2013
  • EUROWEEK VIEW - Building bridges: in vogue M&A structure that could leave firms out in the cold

    The possibility of bridge-to-bond loan facilities in CEEMEA has got the region's M&A bankers rubbing their hands with glee. Finally there might be a way to encourage dormant companies to spend again. But bankers should be careful. Focusing too much on this model could put the brakes on future investment.

    • 22 Jan 2013
  • ECB Presides Over Calm

    The European Central Bank’s largesse continues to underpin the becalmed conditions in the sovereign market and it will take a significant negative catalyst to shift sentiment.

    • 18 Jan 2013
  • In defence of The City, sort of...

    So Mervyn King thinks it’s "depressing" for bankers to delay their bonuses until April and the new tax year to avoid the top rate of tax? I hadn’t thought of this ruse and so I shouted over to the MD of Inn Securities: "Hey! What was my fourth quarter bonus again?" "It was somewhere between a negative value and zero." "Ok, can you delay that payment until April 7th so I pay just 45% tax on it rather than 50%?" "Sure. Whatever you want."

    • 18 Jan 2013
  • Cyborgs on standby?

    HSBC bankers are mourning the retirement of man so famous he needs no name — he is simply “that Irish guy who tells you when the fire alarm is about to be tested”.

    • 18 Jan 2013
  • MTN Leak: Downton shabby

    At Leak Towers we pride ourselves on delivering fully accurate, quadruple sourced information on the latest vital newsworthy goings on to our readers. We know if that trust is ever broken, it could take a lifetime to repair.

    • 18 Jan 2013
  • CLOs: think positive

    First, the good news. After almost six years in the doghouse, the European CLO market could be set for a return this year as Barclays and Credit Suisse prepare deals for Pramerica and Cairn Capital. Now, the bad news: the process is likely to be laboriously slow as the market faces a number of tough hurdles.

    • 18 Jan 2013
  • Loan Ranger: Horses for courses

    With the EuroWeek Loans Dinner swiftly approaching (get your tickets soon, folks!), the task of selecting the menu for the evening falls to Loan Ranger. Now, we’re sure you can imagine that this is a drudging, horrible task — tasting all the delectable dishes, selecting from the finest wines...

    • 18 Jan 2013
  • Research? Yes, sir, it’s a dead cat bounce

    In case you haven’t heard the story, a man in the US outsourced his own job to a company in China. He still went to work, but instead of actually doing his job, he watched cat videos on YouTube, followed inane trends on Reddit and shopped on eBay. Seriously.

    • 18 Jan 2013
  • Temasek prepares to bridge Europe’s lending gap

    Singapore’s state-owned investment fund has added investment bankers to its ranks as it looks to seize opportunities created by bank deleveraging, writes David Rothnie.

    • 18 Jan 2013
  • Let's hear it for pass-through covered bonds

    A covered bond that offers identical credit quality to any other but which is immune from rating volatility should prove a boon to both investors and issuers. A pass-through structure would achieve just that, and NIBC’s decision to explore it should be applauded.

    • 15 Jan 2013
  • Asian loans are over the worst

    Syndicated loan volumes in Asia ex-Japan over the last year present a depressing picture. But beneath the lacklustre statistics is a ray of light. Better times are about to kick in.

    • 15 Jan 2013
  • Rápido, rápido! Spain must get moving on benchmark

    The Kingdom of Spain’s 10 year secondary yields tipped back over the 5% mark on Monday before declining again on Tuesday, showing the precarious nature of the periphery rally. It is the surest sign yet that Spain must issue sooner rather than later, or risk moving further down the road to a bail-out.

    • 15 Jan 2013
  • Mind the long term liquidity gap

    Bankers’ jubilation over the watering down of Basel III will do little to calm the concerns of clients looking for long term liquidity, writes David Rothnie.

    • 11 Jan 2013
  • Equity’s back — but keep it quiet

    Whisper it quietly: Europe might have a fully-functioning equity capital market in 2013. One full week into the new year and already there’s a jumbo IPO in pre-marketing, a deal that if successful could be bigger than anything achieved in 2012 before October.

    • 11 Jan 2013
  • Bargain in Bagan

    HSBC’s Souhail Mahjour, one of the CEEMEA syndicate gang’s last remaining bachelors, has finally taken himself off the market. Drawing on his emerging market expertise, Souhail whisked his beloved off to Bagan (it’s in the Mandalay region of Burma, as if you didn’t already know) and with a glorious sunrise as his backdrop, he dropped to one knee and sealed the deal.

    • 11 Jan 2013
  • MTN Leak: Getting Downton business

    MTN deals were in full flow this week but there were still a few nostalgic types willing to talk about their Christmas break — or at least their colleagues’ festivities.

    • 11 Jan 2013
  • Loan Ranger: A black and white loan market

    London, under its thin covering of snow, looked very black and white on Monday morning. But then syndicated loans are used to having such a binary view of the world.

    • 11 Jan 2013
  • Your guide to what’s hot or not in 2013

    HOT: Survival NOT HOT: The Naked Broker. He is colder than a penguin’s gin and tonic.

    • 11 Jan 2013
  • Basel and time: All it takes for me to give up

    For those of us who make New Year’s resolutions ambitious enough to cause cataclysmic withdrawal symptoms, the start of the year is a dire time. But at least we’ve had a high-profile example that it’s okay to give up early.

    • 11 Jan 2013
  • Spanish Auction Underscores Strong Market

    The strong start to 2013 for sovereign credit has continued into the middle of January.

    • 10 Jan 2013
  • LCR: a victory, yes. But not for the real economy

    The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision’s decision to widen the range of assets eligible for the Liquidity Coverage Ratio, cut the amount of assets required and delay full implementation is positive for the banking industry and a victory for lobbyists. Banks can now breathe a sigh of relief. But let’s not pretend these changes will do much to help the wider economy.

    • 08 Jan 2013
  • Debut issuers: now is your time

    Asian bond bankers have had a barn-storming start to the year, but their next step will be to bring a raft of unfamiliar names to the market. There could be few better times to do so. This market has a lot of room for failed deals.

    • 08 Jan 2013
  • Foggy outlook in the dollar market for SSAs

    Despite the buoyant mood in SSA markets, the prospects for the top quality issuers remain unclear in the dollar market. Borrowers will have to rein in their ambitions, at least as far as size is concerned.

    • 08 Jan 2013
  • Basel hands loan market a Darwinian task

    With Basel III just two years away, the syndicated loan market is running out of time to face up to the increased costs of the Liquidity Coverage Ratio. Lenders and borrowers watching developments know they must, as they have done before, adapt or die.

    • 08 Jan 2013
  • Basel III LCR: too soon for ABS victory cigars

    The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision’s inclusion of certain RMBS in the second tier of bank liquidity buckets is a welcome reprieve for the ABS market. But the same committee’s updated capital risk weightings, published at the end of last year, are likely to curb a flood of new demand for RMBS as banks also face lower returns on capital held against securitisations.

    • 08 Jan 2013
  • Liquidity is the problem, not the solution

    Curing or preventing bank runs with liquid assets is a well-meant, fine idea. But the Basel Liquidity Coverage Ratio is like having an extra bucket of water to pour into an emptying bath. When liquidity starts to drain away, only central banks can put back the plug.

    • 08 Jan 2013
  • Off With A Bang

    This year began with a bang for the sovereign credit default market as spreads in the eurozone’s periphery posted a strong rally in the first week.

    • 04 Jan 2013
  • Loan Ranger: New Year, New Balance Sheet

    Ah January — a brand new year, a brand new balance sheet to fill and a brand new budget to meet. From the lows of 2012, it seems that everyone across the market is hopeful that volumes can only get better and already there are some silver linings visible around January’s grey clouds.

    • 04 Jan 2013
  • Look out, it’s a zombie! Oh, hello Mr Smith

    The Mayans were wrong. There was no apocalypse. But that hardly seems like such good news when you look out of the window. Zombies have taken over our streets.

    • 04 Jan 2013
  • JPM plays nasty Santa

    Blog is pleased to report that some teams went above and beyond for their Christmas celebrations. Not content with the traditional knees up, JP Morgan’s frequent borrowers desk managed to honour not one, but two, cultural phenomena.

    • 04 Jan 2013
  • For SSAs, this January is more important than ever

    With mandates locked and loaded into the SSA chamber, ready for the starter’s gun to sound next week, we could be in for a bumper year. But it would be imprudent to be too optimistic about the current wave of relief washing over the market in the wake of some temporary relief over the US fiscal cliff and a better feeling about the eurozone.

    • 04 Jan 2013
  • CIB passes Bonnafé test at BNPP

    Deleveraging at BNP Paribas has put the bank’s CIB franchise in a position to boost its global standing, writes David Rothnie.

    • 04 Jan 2013
  • MTN Leak: Fiscal Cliff Richard

    Normally at Christmas it’s the warbling of Cliff Richard that sets the tone — or ruins it, depending on your tastes — but this time it was his argumentative American cousin, Fiscal Cliff, who was to blame for dampening everyone’s festive spirits.

    • 04 Jan 2013