Virtual real estate hits Asia
For a region that has had a long-term love affair with property, Asia’s first property derivative could mean the start of a beautiful new relationship. In February, ABN Amro and Hong Kong broker, Sun Hung Kai Financial executed Asia’s maiden property derivative based on Hong Kong residential properties.
Under the terms of the deal, ABN Amro, the effective buyer of the property, receives from Sun Hung Kai Financial an income stream equivalent to the change in the University of Hong Kong-Hong Kong Island Residential Price Index (HKU-HRPI) while Sun Hung Kai will receive from ABN Amro Hibor plus an undisclosed spread.
HKU-HRPI is a sub-index of a series devised and compiled by Hong Kong University.
"It’s a very robust index," says Philip Ljubic, a director in property derivatives at ABN Amro. "If it wasn’t I wouldn’t commit ABN Amro’s balance sheet to it."
The deal size is very small at around $13 million and the swap has a one-year maturity, referenced from December 2006 to December 2007.