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June 2006

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  • Spacs increasingly interested in listing on UK's Alternative Investment Market.
  • One piece of analysis that is certain to be a fixture on desks this summer is a 59-page report by Goldman Sachs. In preparation for the football World Cup, which kicks off on June 9 in Germany, Goldman Sachs has put together a guide to each participating country and its team’s chances of success.
  • Investment banks are thinking of setting up their own alternatives.
  • Merrill Lynch has hired Tim Skeet as a covered bond product specialist reporting to Amir Hoveyda, European head of debt capital markets. He joins Merrill from ABN Amro where he was head of financial institutions origination for Germany and France. He joined the Dutch bank at the start of 2003, before that he held a senior FIG relationship banker role at Barclays Capital. Skeet is a veteran of the debt capital markets and one of the best-known faces in the covered bond sector. He started in the business some 25 years ago at Samuel Montagu.
  • Richard Longmore, head of EMEA FX sales, has abruptly left Merrill Lynch.
  • British Land’s decision to convert to a Reit might prompt the restructuring of its Meadowhall securitization.
  • Bankruptcy of Nici shows vulnerability of small German SME securitizations.
  • Greece has lagged behind the rest of the eurozone in its use of techniques to free up value in real estate loans and assets. But banks’ needs for capital should fuel securitization, and new legislation will enable public bodies to make sale and leaseback deals. Dimitris Kontogiannis reports.
  • Although adoption of an exchange-like structure has been predicted for years, foreign exchange has predominantly been traded over the counter. Could a new initiative by the CME and Reuters finally force the transition through? Lee Oliver reports.
  • Here are the bond issuers that have taken the market by storm over the past 12 months: from the IFC, punching above its weight within the World Bank group with its pioneering work in developing local bond markets, to Bayer’s use of innovative methods to maintain its credit profile while making acquisitions.
  • Despite its size and maturity, the covered bond market is fast changing. New countries, new asset classes and new issuers vie for investors. But does the conflict between regulators’ desire for quality and consistency clash with investors’ needs for yield and diversification?
  • “It’s so bloody liquid, it’s not even funny.”
  • Indian companies have been the largest issuers of foreign currency convertible bonds in Asia. But there could be trouble ahead.
  • The global market tremors that have shaken emerging markets might have been expected to cause a few wobbles for the Bank of China IPO, but not a bit of it.
  • The bad news for Mexicans is that their country is one of the most prone to earthquakes. But at least the government’s financial resources will not be stretched to the limit should one strike following the launch of a $160 million catastrophe bond last month – the region’s first.
  • Hong Kong might have cause to celebrate the PWC report: 97% of the funds raised in the Greater China region were raised in the SAR. Yet it also has much to fear. Always an emotional and volatile market, the Hang Seng Index whipsawed its way through early May after global market wobbles.
  • If a product swamps a market, prices go down. Yet this basic economic tenet seems to have eluded many of the issuers in the Spanish covered bonds market. How else to explain the consistent lack of coordination in issuance endemic in the world of the cédulas?
  • Following a two-year hiatus, Belgium settles trade with Citi.
  • At a time when M&A volumes are rising, a toughening up of the CFIUS could deter foreign companies looking to buy in the US. And that would take a serious chunk out of Wall Street’s fees. Kathryn Tully reports.
  • Quasi-independent debt management offices are bringing new sophistication to government debt management. But de-risking government balance sheets that have so far failed to account properly for contingent liabilities may be beyond them. Peter Lee reports.
  • Is there too much capital trying to find a home?
  • The ability of the CDO bid to distort the wider capital markets is significant – and growing.
  • Funds may take the chance to rebalance but don’t expect a crash.
  • The ballooning demand for mortgage credit in Spain is attracting new players and more flexible products.
  • After years of unfulfilled promise, there is the whiff of optimism in Indonesia as government tackles tangled economic and political challenges. Euromoney spoke to Indonesia’s finance minister, Sri Mulyani Indrawati, about problems, progress and promise. Chris Leahy reports.
  • Japanese government-guaranteed issuers such as DBJ and JBIC have been among the largest issuers of debt from Japan. With reform of these agencies in the pipeline, what plans do they have for issuance as interest in the Japanese economy picks up?
  • Investors have welcomed Thailand’s largest IPO for years with open arms. The problem is that those investors are in Singapore, not Bangkok. The failure to list one of the kingdom’s prize assets at home is symptomatic of much larger problems in the country. Chris Leahy reports.
  • Banks in the Philippines are set for more consolidation as new regulations threaten weaker lenders in a fragmented market. High valuations have dissuaded some from deals, but economic recovery might force them to reconsider. Chris Leahy reports.
  • Why the European government bond markets have failed...and what the European Union would like to do about it
  • “Given all that has happened I’m surprised it wasn’t negative $60 billion” James Gorman, Morgan Stanley In his first public presentation since joining Morgan Stanley in February as president and COO of the global wealth management business, James Gorman outlined how he intended to turn the dwindling arm into a competitive force in the industry.