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The GlobalCapital Covered Bonds Awards 2020

By GlobalCapital
17 Sep 2020

This year almost 400 people responded to the covered bond awards survey, including more than 50 issuers and 200 investors, who said they had bought well over €100bn covered bonds in the past year, with collective covered bond assets under management in excess of €800bn.

HSBC won GlobalCapital’s Covered Bond House of the Year with a decisive winning margin that is likely to have reflected the bank’s solid league table presence across all currencies, though especially in sterling and dollar covered bonds where it excelled. 

LBBW was voted Best Euro Lead Manager, where it scored remarkably well with all market participants reflecting its consistently strong euro league table position and the outstanding number of highly regarded trades that it worked on in the awards period, including many that won or were shortlisted for this year’s awards.

Credit Suisse won the Editor’s Choice award, decided by GlobalCapital’s team of journalists. The Swiss bank has shown quiet determination in covered bonds over the past few years, but in 2020 it put in a stellar performance, excelling both in the volume and quality of deals which included many of this year’s winners. 

Three French banks were all clearly striving for Best Syndicate Manager, but it was Crédit Agricole CIB that came out on top with strong recognition from lead managers and issuers underscoring its work on many of this year’s best deals, where its judgement on price and timing came to the fore.

NatWest Markets took the prize for Best Sterling Lead Manager, reflecting its exceptionally strong endorsement from all parts of the market, an excellent roster of superb deals that were all featured in this year’s awards and its dominant league table presence. 

With a push from lead managers and investors Royal Bank of Canada was considered the Best Dollar Lead Manager. With its strong access to a network of domestic covered bond buyers that are often not easily reached, DZ Bank was considered Best Bank for Distribution and was widely recognised by the whole market, though particularly among the investor community. 

In a hard-fought battle with one other bank, and by a relatively slim margin, Barclays won Best Structuring and ALM Adviser, reflecting its strong global presence as an arranger, including many inaugural mandates. 

Three banks accounted for 70% of the overall vote for Best Liquidity Provider, for which there was no shortlist. With a dominant share of secondary market trading volumes and a strong commendation from issuers and large investors, this year’s winner was JP Morgan.

For Best Covered Bond Research there was no shortlist. Although 18 banks received votes, the contest was down to two who each took almost a third of the entire vote. With a solid endorsement from large investors, this year’s winner, by a whisker, is Commerzbank.

Santander SA won Best Issuer of the Year and Best Deal of the Year, with the group launching no less than eight covered bonds in three currencies across three jurisdictions during the awards period — including some spectacular deals that broke new ground or, like its two-part euro Cédulas, were simply notable for being perfectly timed and executed. 

Having visited the market four times during the qualifying period, pricing a rare 20 year almost flat to mid-swaps and a memorable five year that provided funding for French hospitals fighting Covid on the frontline, Caffil was this year’s Best Euro Issuer.

Thanks largely to the investor community, Caisse de Refinancement de l’Habitat took the prize for Best Euro Deal with its two part €1.25bn February 2028 and €750m February 2035 which hauled in a stunning order book amid concern over the European Central Bank’s diminished presence.

With a strong endorsement from investors, who presumably liked the triple-digit spread, Toronto Dominion’s $1.25bn April 2023 was this year Best Dollar Deal. 

Santander UK won this year’s best sterling deal for its €1bn Sonia-linked trade, the first ever issued in the seven year tenor, which was launched alongside its $1.25bn three year, this being the first 144A transaction from a UK bank in eight years and the first structured with a soft bullet extension linked to the new dollar Libor alternative, Sofr. 

Luminor Bank took the prize for Best Debut Deal for its €500m March 2025 where issuers, lead managers and investors all gave a very strong and clear endorsement reflecting the fact it was the first to open up the Baltic markets, the first under Estonia’s new covered bond framework.

BPCE won Best Green/SRI Deal for its €1.25bn May 2030 which got an exceptionally strong commendation from lead managers, perhaps due to the fact that the bank’s debut green deal attracted more demand than any French covered bond in the past eight years, with more investors than any transaction issued this year. 

With a leading margin of 7% but no special regulatory treatment, Deutsche Bank’s €500m November 2024 was considered the Most Innovative Deal.  

By GlobalCapital
17 Sep 2020