Long Island Lighting Co. yesterday announced tender offers for $700 million of its outstanding debt and could issue "considerably" more than $700 million of new debt next week, a company official said.
Whether Lilco issues the new debt, and how much and when, hinges on the tender offers' success, Spencer Hughes, a Lilco assistant treasurer, said yesterday.
Lilco announced tender offers for its $350 million of 10.875% debentures due June 15, 1999, and $350 million of 11.375% debentures due June 15, 2019. The company requires that debenture holders tender at least 60% of each issue, but neither tender offer's success depends on the other's. The amount of new debt the company issues will correspond to the amount tendered, Mr. Hughes said.
"We have been thinking about it [refinancing] for a while," Mr. Hughes said. "Interest rates have certainly moved in the right direction."
The tender offers began yesterday and will expire at 5 p.m. eastern daylight time on Monday, unless Lilco extends them. If Lilco determines enough bonds have been tendered by that date, the new issues could arrive as early as next Tuesday or Wednesday, Mr. Hughes said.
The tender price for the 10.875% debentures due 1999 will be $1,150 per $1,000 principal amount, plus accrued interest from June 15 up to, but excluding, the settlement date, the Lilco release says. The price for the 11.375% debentures due 2019 will be $1,199 per $1,000 principal amount, plus accrued interest from June 15 up to, but excluding, the settlement date.
The overall cost to Lilco must not exceed 7.90% for the 10.875% debentures and 9.28% for the 11.375% debt, Mr. Hughes said.
Lehman Brothers; Dillon, Read & Co.; and Kidder, Peabody & Co. will serve as dealer managers for the tender offers, while State Street Bank and Trust Co. of Connecticut will serve as depositary, he said.
The company expects the tender offers to settle approximately seven business days after the expiration date.
Shell Oil issued $250 million of 6.625% notes due 1999. The noncallable notes were priced at 99.859 to yield 6.65%, or 18 basis points over seven-year Treasuries. Moody's Investors Service and Standard & Poor's Corp. rate the notes triple-A. Morgan Stanley & Co. sole managed the offering.
Georgia Pacific issued $250 million of 9.125% debentures due 2022. Noncallable for 10 years, the bonds were priced at 98 to yield 9.324$, or 169 basis points over comparable Treasuries. Moody's rates the offering Baa3 and Standard & Poor's rates it BB-plus. Salomon Brothers lead managed the offering.
Shearson Lehman Brothers Holdings issued $200 million of 7.625% notes due 1999. The noncallable notes were priced at 99.733 to yield 7.675%, or 120 basis points over comparable Treasuries. Moody's rates the offering A3 and Standard & Poor's rates it A-plus. Lehman Brothers lead managed the offering.
International Lease Finance issued $150 million of 6.5% notes due 1997. The noncallable notes were priced at 99.796 to yield 6.549%, or 58 basis points over comparable Treasuries. Moody's rates the offering A2 and Standard & Poor's rates it A-plus. Salomon Brothers lead managed the offering.
McDonald's Corp. issued $150 million of 7.375% notes due 2002. Noncallable for seven years, the bonds were priced at 99.894 to yield 7.39%, or 50 basis points over 10-year Treasuries. Moody's rates the offering Aa2, while Standard & Poor's rates it AA. Salomon Brothers lead managed the offering.
Bell Telephone of Pennsylvania issued $150 million of 7.375% bonds due 2007. The noncallable bonds were priced at 99.338 to yield 7.449%, or 55 basis points over 10-year Treasuries. Moody's rates the offering Aa1 and Standard & Poor's rates it AA. First Boston Corp. lead managed the offering.
In secondary activity yesterday, both high-yield and high-grade bonds finished unchanged in quiet trading.
Duff & Phelps Credit Rating Co. has downgraded Consolidated Natural Gas Co.'s senior debt to AA-minus from AA and its convertible subordinated debentures to A-plus from AA-minus. The rating agency reaffirmed the company's commercial paper rating at Duff One-Plus.
"Credit protection measures have been pressured by the need to finance relatively high levels of capital spending over the past several years," a Duff & Phelps release says.
Standard & Poor's withdrew the B-plus rating for Life Partners Group Inc.'s proposed $125 million senior subordinated notes due 2002 after the company postponed its initial public offering.
Life Partners original recapitalization plan called for an IPO of common stock, the buying back of some existing preferred stock, and the refinancing of some outstanding debt.
"The company has postponed the issuance of its common stock due to unfavorable market conditions, but will proceed with the debt portion of the plan," an agency release says. "S&P is currently reconsidering its rating of the proposed new debt offering of $100 million of senior subordinated notes due 2002 in view of the restructuring of the overall offering, and plans to meet with management shortly in connection with the new rating."
Standard & Poor's has put Pulte Home Corp./Pulte Home Credit Corp.'s BB-plus subordinated debt rating on CreditWatch for a possible upgrade. The company's implied senior rating is BBB-minus.
Pulte Home Corp. is the main operating unit of PHM Corp., a holding company for operating units involved in home building and financial services.
"Pulte's financial performance during the recent home building downturn has been better than anticipated," Standard & Poor's release says.