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Primary debt poll 2008: Survival of the fittest

After a year that has been ruthless in its revelation of sub-par debt services, the Euromoney debt poll reveals which banks have managed to survive the credit crunch with their reputations, and their client bases, still intact.

Separating the wheat from the chaff in debt services

Primary debt poll: Overall

Primary debt poll: Best service provision

Primary debt poll: Best by currency

Primary debt poll: Best by product

Primary debt poll: Full methodology

Deutsche Bank is the clear winner of this year’s poll, coming first in nine of the poll’s 25 separate categories.

One of these is non-deal-related investor relations, which has become increasingly important since the crunch as clients now demand more information on general market conditions rather than around specific deals. The German bank reclaims the top spot after being pushed into second by UBS last year. The Swiss bank now sits in fourth, behind Barclays Capital and JPMorgan as well as Deutsche Bank, and just ahead of Goldman Sachs in fifth.

Goldman, like Barcap, is one of the poll’s big movers, reaching fifth from ninth last year. Goldman’s biggest moves in the poll come in the categories for separate products, climbing at least seven places in each of structured notes/MTNs, ABS provision and hybrid products. Barclays climbs from fourth last year to second this, with its most notable results coming in the crucial fields of distribution and execution. The UK bank climbed from seventh to third in both of these categories.

Each of the top five banks in the poll have seen their share of the debt markets increase in the past year, as clients recognize the value of quality over quantity that might not have been as important in the bull market of 12 months ago. As for the banks that have conversely suffered in their poll results this year over last, it is generally the US banks that have fallen the most, while their European counterparts have benefited. Citi falls from sixth to seventh, Lehman Brothers from eighth to 11th, and Morgan Stanley has dropped to a lowly 13th from seventh last year. In Europe, BNP Paribas, HSBC and Credit Suisse come 10th, 11th and 12th respectively, all of which are improvements over last year’s results.

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