Corporate Bond Issuers Close Books on Record Quarter; What’s Next for IG DCM?
March 31, 2017   //   by Mischler MarCom   //   Debt Market Commentary  

Quigley’s Corner 03.31.17   QC’s Q1 Investment Grade Corporate Debt DCM Look-Back and Look Ahead


Investment Grade Corporate Debt New Issue Re-Cap

IG Primary & Secondary Market Talking Points

The Best and the Brightest”  Syndicate Forecasts and Sound Bites for Next Week and April

Syndicate IG Corporate-only Volume Estimates for Next Week and April

“Knowing the Past for the Future” – A Look at a Decade’s Worth of April IG Corporate and SSA Issuance

NICs, Bid-to-Covers, Tenors, Sizes and Average Spread Compression from IPTs thru Launches

New Issues Priced

This Week’s IG New Issues and Where They’re Trading – Great Market Tone!

Indexes and New Issue Volume

Lipper Report/Fund Flows – Week ending March 29th

New Issue Pipeline

M&A Pipeline

Economic Data Releases

Rates Trading Lab

Month end? Quarter end?  Lots of Global economic data? You know what that means. It was a signed, sealed and delivered no-print Friday today.  That’s always welcome as it gave me a head start on today’s more involved syndicate survey.  Forecasts today are for next week’s primary market supply as well as for the month of April.  I also have a snapshot of a decade’s worth of April IG supply across three categories: all-in (Corps + SSA), Corporate as well as just SSA volumes.  I call the section “Knowing the Past for the Future.” It will help put the Best and Brightest’s thoughts and numbers into a historical perspective for you.  You should take a look at that table.

To quickly re-cap their thoughts, all 24 syndicate desks responded to my “QC” survey  The midpoint average for next week’s IG Corporate only supply is $21.40b characterized by tight voting groups with 18 of the 24 participants projecting within $20 to $25b with a low of $12b and a high of $31b.  As for April, the average was $91.50b.  Voting brackets were all over the place ranging from a low of $65b to a high of $111b. But don’t just take my word for it.  All 24 syndicate operatives contributed responses with their numbers so, scroll down below and read their meaningful thoughts.

I hope you enjoy your read and that it helps you prepare for the week and month ahead.  Thanks again to the stellar 24 participating syndicate desks who are always there for me and for YOU each and every Friday edition of the “QC”.

IG Primary & Secondary Market Talking Points


  • BAML’s IG Master Index was unchanged at +122.  +106 represents the post-Crisis low dating back to July 2007.
  • Bloomberg/Barclays US IG Corporate Bond Index OAS was unchanged at 1.17.
  • Standard & Poor’s Investment Grade Composite Spread tightened 1 bp to +163 vs. +164.  The +140 reached on July 30th 2014 represents the post-Crisis low.
  • Investment grade corporate bond trading posted a final Trace count of $19.3b on Thursday versus $20.7b on Wednesday and $17.8b the previous Thursday.
  • The 10-DMA stands at $17.3b.


Syndicate IG Corporate-only Volume Estimates for This Week and March


IG Corporate New Issuance This Week
vs. Current
WTD – $22.15b
March 2017
vs. Current
MTD – $129.998b
Low-End Avg. $25.25b 87.72% $113.79b 114.24%
Midpoint Avg. $26.50b 83.58% $114.31b 113.72%
High-End Avg. $27.75b 79.82% $114.83b 113.21%
The Low $15b 147.67% $80b 162.50%
The High $31b 71.45% $140b 92.86


The Best and the Brightest”  Syndicate Forecasts and Sound Bites for Next Week and April

I am happy to announce that the “QC” once again received 100% unanimous participation from all 24 syndicate desks surveyed for today’s “Best & Brightest” edition!  23 of those participants are among 2017’s YTD top 26 ranked syndicate desks according to today’s Bloomberg’s U.S. IG U.S. Investment Grade Corporate Bond underwriting league table.  The 2017 League table can be found on your terminals at “LEAG” + [GO] after which you select (US Investment Grade Corporates).  The participating desks represent 83.65% of all IG dollar-denominated new issue underwriting as of today’s table share percentage which simply means they’re the ones with visibility.

*Please note that these are Investment Grade Corporates only. They do not include SSA issuance unless otherwise noted.

My weekly technical data re-cap and question posed to the “Best and the Brightest” early this morning was prefaced as follows:


First up, here’s are this week’s IG new issue volume talking points:

  • We fell 17% shy of this week’s syndicate midpoint average forecast or $22.15b vs. $26.50b.
  • MTD we’ve priced 13% more than the IG Corporate mid-range projection for all of March or $129.998b vs. $114.31b.
  • The all-in MTD total (IG Corporates plus SSA) now stands at $166.158b. March, 2017 has officially broken into 8th place as the highest volume month for all-in issuance (IG Corporates plus SSA).
  • The YTD IG Corporate only volume is now $393.085b. It is the highest IG Corporate-only quarterly volume total in history.
  • YTD we have officially priced $506.151b in all-in IG Corporate and SSA issuance also ranking it #1 as the highest quarterly volume total ever.

Here are this week’s five key primary market driver averages from the 38 IG Corporate-only deals that priced:

  • NICS:  0.46 bps
  • Oversubscription Rates: 3.48x
  • Tenors:  10.14 years
  • Tranche Sizes: $791mm
  • Spread Compression from IPTs to the Launch: <19.31> bps

Here’s how this week’s performance data compares against last week’s:

  • Average NICs tightened 1.29 bps this week to 0.46 bps vs. 1.75 bps.
  • Over subscription or bid-to-cover rates, the measure of demand, increased 0.58x to 3.48x vs. 2.90x.. 
  • Average tenors shortened by a meaningful 1.41 years to 10.14 years vs. 11.55 years.
  • Tranche sizes upsized by $99mm to $791mm vs. $692mm.
  • Spread compression from IPTs to the launch/final pricing of this week’s 38 IG Corporate-only new issues tightened 3.87 bps to <19.31> bps vs. <15.44>.
  • Standard and Poor’s Investment Grade Composite Spreads tightened 2 bps to +163 vs. +165 week on week,
  • Bloomberg/Barclays US IG Corporate Bond Index OAS tightened 1 bp to 1.17 vs. 1.18 last Friday. 
  • Week-on-week, BAML’s IG Master Index tightened by 1 bp to +122 vs. +123. 
  • Spreads across the four IG asset classes tightened by 0.75 bps to 16.00 bps vs. 16.75 as measured against their post-Crisis lows. 
  • The 19 major industry sectors also tightened by 0.74 bps to 19.63 vs. 20.37 also against their post-Crisis lows.
  • For the week ended March 29th, Lipper U.S. Fund Flows reported an inflow of $3.966b into Corporate Investment Grade Funds (2017 YTD net inflow of $39.089b) and a net outflow of $248.465m from High Yield Funds (2017 YTD net outflow of $5.937b).
  • Taking a look at the secondary trading performance of this week’s 38 IG and 3 SSA new issues, of the 41 deals that printed, 32 tightened versus NIP for a 78.00% improvement rate while 4 widened (9.75%) and 5 were flat (12.25%).

The numbers are in.  Entering today’s Friday’s session here’s how much we issued this week:

  • IG Corps: $22.15b
  • All-in IG (Corps + SSA): $25.90b

Is this week’s overwhelmingly hawkish Fed-speak justified? Or, is Fed leadership talking up yields?  The GOP seemed to have recovered from the health care fiasco.  Monday saw 10 issuers stand down, but the market quickly recouped lost ground with issuers printing the rest of the week.  Today marks month-end but more importantly quarter end. The Easter break is approaching all before we re-enter black-outs.

And now the all-important “two-part” question (and answer(s) posed to the fixed income market’s top Syndicate desks, along with my synopsis of everything Syndicate and Secondary from today’s debt capital markets, including the investment grade corporate bond data drill down as seen from my seat here in Syndicate, Sales and DCM.

Have a great evening!
Ron Quigley, Managing Director and Head of Fixed Income Syndicate

Above is the opening extract from Quigley’s Corner aka “QC”  Friday Mar 31 2017 edition distributed via email to institutional investment managers and Fortune Treasury clients of Mischler Financial Group, the investment industry’s oldest minority broker-dealer owned and operated by Service-Disabled Veterans.

Cited by Wall Street Letter in each of 2014, 2015 and 2016 for “Best Research / Broker-Dealer”, the QC observations is one of three distinctive research content pieces produced by Mischler Financial Group. The QC is a daily synopsis of everything Syndicate and Secondary as seen from the perch of our fixed income trading and debt capital markets desk and includes a comprehensive “deep dive” with optics on the day’s investment grade corporate debt new issuance and secondary market data encompassing among other items, comparables, investment grade credit spreads, new issue activity, secondary market most active issues, and upcoming pipeline.

To receive Quigley’s Corner, please email: or via phone 203.276.6646

*Sources: Bank of America/Merrill Lynch, Bloomberg, Bond Radar, Dow Jones Newswire, IFR, Informa Global Markets, Internal Mischler, LCDNews, Market News International, Prospect News, Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services, S, Thomson Reuters and of course, a career of sources, contacts, movers and shakers from syndicate desks to accounts; from issuers to originators; from academicians to heads of research, and a host of financial journalists, et al.

Mischler Financial Group’s “U.S. Syndicate Closing Commentary”  is produced weekly by Mischler Financial Group. No part of this document may be reproduced in any manner without the permission of Mischler Financial Group. Although the statements of fact have been obtained from and are based upon sources Mischler Financial Group believes reliable, we do not guarantee their accuracy, and any such information may be incomplete.  All opinions and estimates included in this report are subject to change without notice.  This report is for informational purposes and is not intended as an offer or solicitation with respect to the purchase or sale of any security.   Veteran-owned broker-dealer Mischler Financial Group, its affiliates and their respective officers, directors, partners and employees, including persons involved in the preparation of this report, may from time to time maintain a long or short position in, or purchase or sell a position in, hold or act as market-makers or advisors or brokers in relation to the securities (or related securities, financial products, options, warrants, rights, or derivatives), of companies mentioned in this report or be represented on the board of such companies. Neither Mischler Financial Group nor any officer or employee of Mischler Financial Group or any affiliate thereof accepts any liability whatsoever for any direct, indirect or consequential damages or losses arising from any use of this report or its contents.

Corporate Bond Issuers Close Books on Record Quarter; What’s Next for IG DCM? Mischler Debt Market Commentary 03.31.17