Venezuela Issue to Be Marketed by Bankers Trust
In a further sign of renewed economic vigor in Latin American, Bankers Trust New York Corp. will market a $100 million, five-year Eurobond for Venezuela.
The deal is the latest in a series of underwriting mandates U.S. banks have been snapping up on behalf of private and public Latin American issuers.
Pricing on the $100 million issue was originally expected to be set at about 239 basis points above the rate on five-year U.S. Treasury notes but is now likely to be lower.
Caracas' Approval Pending
Pierre Durand, managing director for trading and distribution of new issues and Third World debt paper at Bankers Trust in New York, said the bank plans to market the issue as soon as the Venezuelan government gives final approval.
Mr. Durand said the recent success of a similar Mexican government bond issue at 225 basis points above U.S. Treasury rates will probably bring down pricing on the Venezuelan issue.
In addition to underwriting the $100 million Venezuelan issue, Bankers Trust has a mandate to lead manage $230 million in bonds from Petroleos de Venezuela, the state-owned oil company.
The bank also expects soon to begin marketing $200 million in medium-term notes for Nacional Financiera, the Mexican government finance agency, and it recently issued $92 million in three-year bonds for Mexico's Corporacion Industrial de San Luis and $33 million in convertible bonds on the Euromarkets for Tubos de Acero de Mexico, S.A., a Mexican steel company.
In the biggest deal to date for a Latin American issuer, J.P. Morgan & Co. last May lead managed a $425 million, five-year issue for Cemex, the Mexican cement company.
Mr. Durand said investor demand has been strong for both Venezuelan and Mexican issues - mainly from offshore investment funds, as well as European and Japanese institutional and retail investors.
Salomon Sees Strenght
Attesting to the increasing attractiveness of Latin American issues, Salomon Brothers Inc. last month issued a statement saying Petroleos de Venezuela "compares favorably with double- and triple-A-rated multinational oil companies."