Argentina's $75 million global offering is expected to be included in $1.45 billion or more of new junk and high-grade issues set for this week.
The Republic of Argentina's 10-year global bond offering is expected to be launched late this week, market sources said Friday.
Underwriters on the offering are Merrill Lynch & Co., Salomon Brothers Inc., and Banco Rio de la Plata. Also this week, possibly Tuesday, Stone Consolidated Corp. is expected to price $225 million of senior secured notes due 2000 through Salomon Brothers as sole manager.
On Wednesday, Connecticut Light & Power is expected to sell $125 million of first and refunding mortgage bonds due 2026 through competitive bidding, according to Jeff Kotkin, manager of investor relations at the company.
Proceeds will be used to refund existing debt, Kotkin said. The company probably would have done a larger offering if rates had not gone up, he said.
The offering is rated A-minus by Duff & Phelps Credit Rating Co., Baa1 by Moody's Investors Service, and BBB-plus by Standard & Poor's Corp.
Sometime between Wednesday and Friday, Dan River Inc. is expected to offer $100 million of senior notes due 2003 through lead manager Merrill Lynch & Co.
In other news, Standard & Poor's Committee on Uniform Security Identification Procedures Service Bureau said it has reached an agreement with Mexico's Central Depositary to give each publicly traded Mexican security its own International Securities Identification Number.
The agreement, effective Jan. 1, designates the depositary, S.D. Indeval, as the CUSIP Service Bureau's exclusive agent in Mexico, and makes CUSIP's international number system [CINS] the official securities identifier in Mexico, according to a Standard & Poor's release.
"This historic agreement provides the growing Mexican securities market with a globally recognized numbering standard, and makes Mexico's securities identification system compatible with those of its two Nafta partners," said Harry J. Lopez, director of support services for the CUSIP Service Bureau, in the release.
Currently, close to 2,000 publicly traded Mexican securities exist. During 1992 and the nine months of this year leading up to Nafta, the Mexican government and 15 nongovernmental issuers raised the equivalent of more than U.S. $10 billion in the Eurobond markets alone.
In secondary trading on Friday, spreads on high-grade bonds ended a quiet day unchanged overall, while Eastman Kodak Co. issues widened about five basis points on a Standard & Poor's downgrade.
Junk prices ended 1/4 point higher.
"The market just had a better tone to it overall," one high-yield source said.
Standard & Poor's cut its ratings on Eastman Kodak Co.'s and its related entities and removed them from CreditWatch where they were placed on June 15 on news of Kodak's plan to spin off its Eastman Chemicals unit to shareholders.
The following ratings were lowered: senior debt to BBB-plus from A-minus; subordinated debt to BBB from BBB-plus; $2.2 billion Rule 415 senior shelf debt rating to preliminary BBB-plus from preliminary A-minus. Standard & Poor's affirmed the company's A-2 commercial paper.
Standard & Poor's has placed the Bank of Nova Scotia's ratings on CreditWatch for a possible downgrade. The rating agency has also placed ratings of Montreal Trustco and its operating subsidiaries on CreditWatch with developing implications, meaning the ratings could move up or down.
"The S&P CreditWatch placements were prompted by the announcement [Thursday] that BNS and MT have reached an agreement for BNS to acquire all the common shares of MT from its parent BCE Inc., subject to the results of a due diligence investigation by BNS to be completed by Jan. 31, 1994," the release says.
"The negative CreditWatch listing for BNS is caused by the uncertainties connected with the acquisition. as the due diligence is still to be completed. In general, there appears to be a good strategic fit between BNS's desire to expand operations in the trust business and MT's business lines," the release says.
Ratings placed on CreditWatch negative affect $2.849 billion of Bank of Nova Scotia securities. The are the bank's AA-minus senior debt, A-plus subordinated debt, AA-minus/A-1-plus certificates of deposit, and A-1-plus commercial paper.
Ratings placed on CreditWatch with developing implications affect some $960 million of debt. Affected are Montreal Trustco's A senior debt, and Montreal Trust Co.'s A senior debt and A/A1 certificates of deposit.
About $7 billion of debt is affected.