Turkish bond issuance picks up

Dominic O’Neill
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As international appetite for Turkish risk has risen, 2011 and 2012 have been record years for bond issuance by Turkish banks. Some of Turkey’s biggest banks have issued Eurobonds for the first time over the past two years and many are following up with additional issuance now.

Last month, Akbank issued $1 billion in five-year and 10-year notes, with the five-year tranche priced at just 3.875%. In September, Garanti’s Eurobonds became the first to benefit from new investment-grade foreign-currency ratings that Moody’s awarded in the summer to five of the biggest Turkish banks. Garanti’s new $750 million 10-year Eurobond was priced to yield 5.375%, with $600 million in five-year notes priced at 4.175%.

Isbank also issued its first bond in 2011. Halkbank issued its debut Eurobond this July, raising $750 million at what was then a record low yield for Turkish banks – 5%. "We’re starting to tap the debt capital markets," says Hakan Atilla, head of international banking at state-owned Halkbank, which the government is selling down via a secondary public offering...