The quest for securitization
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The quest for securitization

Imagine the volume of issuance if German mortgage banks were allowed to securitize their home loan portfolios. What if Germany's big commercial banks could turn their loan books into CLOs and sell them to bond and commercial paper investors? Well now they can. German banks will issue Dm20 billion in asset-backed securities this year. As Euan Hagger reports, the market should get much bigger.

WestLB seeks diversification

It all started off cordially enough. In May Deutsche Bank kickstarted the market for German mortgage-backed securities, with a Dm1.4 billion ($800 million) securitization of residential mortgages originated by its commercial banking division. Then, in late July, Deutsche Bank returned to the market with what it claimed was the first ever securitization of German corporate loans. But was it?

Although Deutsche Bank was widely reported as having issued the first German collateralized loan obligation (CLO), Dresdner Bank has cried foul.

In April, Dresdner Bank securitized Dm2 billion of its corporate loans through an asset-backed commercial paper and Euro-MTN conduit, Silver Tower, a fact rather lost in the blaze of publicity surrounding Deutsche Bank's term securitization.

Deutsche Bank won't be complaining. But even though Dresdner Bank is well known for not liking the limelight, it is unlikely to be amused. A CLO issued through the commercial paper markets is never going to attract the same attention as a CLO placed with bond investors in the public markets, but that won't stop Dresdner Bank feeling a little hard done by.

The contrast between publicity conscious Deutsche Bank and Dresdner Bank's more retiring figure is a diverting, but minor footnote to what is set to be a scintillating opening chapter to the story of bank securitization in Germany.

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