Despite a sluggish first quarter, the leveraged loan market is expected to grow this year, fueled by fantastic levels of liquidity and rising investor demand.

At least, a new study by BancAmerica Securities' loan syndications research unit predicts it will. Steven D. Oldham, the study's author, pointed to several factors, including the billions of dollars raised by equity sponsors last year and a glut of deals in the high-yield market, as evidence that a leveraged lending boom is about to begin.

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