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Debt ceiling, desert dealing and companies keeling

- How borrowers are navigating the US’s debt ceiling stand-off - The rise of Middle East capital markets - Tougher times ahead for European corporate issuers

The National Debt Clock in the AnitaOs Way arcade in Times Square in New York on Tuesday, May 17, 2023. President Biden and congress are negotiating on a bill to raise the debt ceiling before June 1 when the US would start defaulting on its obligations. (

This was the week when capital markets really started to worry about the US hitting its debt ceiling. We examine how that affected issuers in the dollar market this week from SSAs to the big Wall Street firms, to big companies.

But the tension has spread far beyond the US, including to the European corporate bond market where, if you looked closely, there were this first signs of trouble after a buoyant three weeks of issuance. We look at how that market will cope in the coming weeks and months given Uncle Sam paying his dues is far from its only worry.

The Middle East capital markets have also been in fine form. Not only do we discuss the sukuk market’s stellar year and weather this marks a turning point in its development; we also look at an astonishing IPO from Abu Dhabi to see what it tells us about the growth, but also the limitations, of the region’s capital markets.

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