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RBC brings Canadian covered bonds to the fore

Royal Bank of Canada has launched its €15 billion covered bond programme with a jumbo issue in the European covered bond market. The deal is Canada’s first ever covered bond.

Nick Morgan, RBC

"We are not ruling out other currencies, but our objective is to build a curve in the European market"
Nick Morgan, RBC

RBC presented the programme during an extensive roadshow, its first for debt investors, covering 15 cities in Europe and culminating in London and Zurich. Before embarking on the roadshow, there was concern at the bank that investors would not be sufficiently prepared for the issue in terms of the attention and focus they could give to a covered bond from a new issuer from a completely new market. That concern was alleviated by a good turnout and excellent feedback. "The roadshow was hugely successful from our point of view," says Nick Morgan, head of the capital markets financial institutions group at RBC. "European investors have embraced the opportunity to diversify their holdings and add new exposures."

Because of the high volatility in the covered bond markets, RBC was relying on investor feedback to determine the best time to launch its debut issue. With the bullish noises coming from the roadshow and the positive response to other planned issues, such as the HBOS seven-year euro benchmark, RBC felt that the time was right for issuance.

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