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Strong start to 2012 for European corporate bonds, up 83% over 2011 YTD

After a slow 6 months ending 2011, European corporate bond activity is showing the green shoots of recovery with strong start to 2012.

• European corporate debt totals US$75 billion so far during 2012, up 83% over the same period in 2011, and a year-to-date total only surpassed by 2009 in the last decade. January 2012 saw US$48 billion raised, the strongest month since March 2011 (US$50 billion). With a week to go before the end of the month, February issuance is already up 68% over February 2011.

• German, UK and French borrowers dominate the European corporate bond market, accounting for 69% of all issuance. The Energy & Power and Industrials sectors are particularly prevalent in Europe, accounting for over 44% of the market.

• New banking regulations arising from Basel III are driving borrowers away from the loans market, and into the bonds markets. Borrowers are also favouring bonds over loans for funding because of favourable coupons, a quicker deal closing process and good liquidity in the bonds markets. Deals have been regularly oversubscribed and market sentiment is good.

Thomson Reuters Deals Insight

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