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Capital Markets

Structured finance: Volumes rocket, up for fourth year in a row

It has been a glorious first half of the year for global structured finance, with volumes outperforming the plain vanilla universe for the fourth year in a row. The total rocketed up by more than a quarter, to $1.2 trillion from $944.6 billion during the first half of 2004.

It was a similar, but even more impressive, story for global ABS volumes, which reached $589 billion during the first half of 2005, a 37% increase on the first six months of 2004. This represents 19% of global debt issuance, compared with 15% during the comparable period a year ago. US home equity loan transactions are mostly responsible for the increase and more than ever is sold into Europe. London-based syndicate officials think that between 40% and 60% of HEL paper is sold offshore.

Hot market

In Europe, although RMBS continues to dominate, providing nearly 60% of activity, the CMBS market is also very hot. Virtually all banks with capital markets operations are establishing loan conduits whose sole purpose is to originate commercial real estate assets for securitization. Between January and June, international CMBS came to €23 billion compared with €3 billion over the same period in 2004 and €12.7

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