Banks brought a load of junk to the market this week.
Chase Securities Inc., BT Securities Corp., and CIBC Wood Gundy Securities were among the securities firms that ushered a slew of issuers to the high-yield market this week, amid hefty investor demand and favorable interest rates.
Chase led a $225 million quasi-public bond, known as a 144a, for Beldon & Blake Corp., an oil and gas concern in North Canton, Ohio. The original issue for the company, owned by financial sponsor Texas Pacific Group, was set for $200 million, but investor demand caused the underwriters to increase the deal.
The bonds, which Moody's Investors Service rated B3 and Standard & Poor's Corp. rated B-minus, were priced to yield 9.875%.
Meanwhile, BT Securities led a $150 million rule 144a for Randall's Food Markets Inc., a Houston-based supermarket chain owned by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts Co. The bonds had a 9.375% coupon to yield 9.4%, or 300 basis points above Treasuries.
Standard & Poor's rated the bonds B-minus, and Moody's rated them B2. "BT has become a marquee high-yield underwriter, and they cut their teeth in supermarket land," said one supermarket analyst. "They're known for their expertise and muscle in the sector."
Though BT Securities won the Randall's bond deal, KKR chose Chase to lead its $350 million bank loan.
CIBC Wood Gundy also led a $115 million issue for Talton Holdings Inc., an inmate telecommunications service provider at par to yield 11%, or 460 basis points above Treasuries. Investor demand also pushed up the offering from its originally proposed $110 million. It was rated B2 by Moody's and B by Standard & Poor's.
Mark Durbiano, who manages a $3.2 billion high-yield portfolio for Federated Investors, said there is demand for these securities and issuers have responded to a favorable rate environment.
"This is an attractive time to finance," he said.