Europe's banks claim home advantage in virus lending spike

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By Mariam Meskin, Mike Turner, Silas Brown
23 Apr 2020

After years of not only falling loan volumes but being trounced in their own back yard, Europe's banks finally seem to have an edge against their US counterparts. With loan pricing gapping out in response to the coronavirus pandemic, but companies desperate for cash, the continent's lenders are proving first port of call for local borrowers, leaving US and Asian banks less active. Silas Brown, Mariam Meskin and Mike Turner report.

Over the past few years the loan market had grown accustomed to a slower pace of life. Volumes for primary issuance fell as alternative forms of debt proved more attractive for borrowers pushing margins ever lower.

But as the coronavirus pandemic hit Europe and its capital markets, loans desks had to snap into action ...

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