Category: High Yield Weekly

21 Feb 2020

CAM High Yield Weekly Insights

Fund Flows & Issuance:  According to a Wells Fargo report, flows week to date were -$0.1 billion and year to date flows stand at $2.0 billion.  New issuance for the week was $3.1 billion and year to date issuance is at $63.7 billion.



(Bloomberg)  High Yield Market Highlights


  • It’s looking like a risk-off day in the junk-bond market as stock futures fall amid renewed concerns about the spread of the coronavirus outside China.
  • CAA yields, meanwhile, have crossed the 10% mark for the first time in three weeks.
  • Issuers are likely to remain on the sidelines Friday and the calendar is light, though Bausch Health is expected to emerge with a $3.25b junk-bond that’s part of a broader $8b refinancing
  • Yields rose 4bps to 5.13%, the biggest jump in three weeks though the index posted a modest gain of 0.018%
  • BA yields rose 4ps to 3.64%, single-B yields rose to 5%



(Bloomberg)  Macy’s, Renault Add to Fallen Angel Fear With Downgrades to Junk


  • The credit-rating downgrades of Macy’s Inc. and Renault SA to junk status are rekindling fears among investors of a potential uptick in so-called fallen angels after a run of relative tranquility in the U.S. corporate bond market.
  • The American retailer and French carmaker each lost an investment-grade rating Tuesday, affecting billions of dollars of debt. They follow Kraft Heinz Co., the iconic U.S. packaged-food company, which was downgraded to junk by two credit raters last Friday as its turnaround shows little signs of progress.
  • Even though Macy’s and Renault were downgraded for idiosyncratic reasons and will still trade in investment-grade indexes unless another credit-rating company follows suit, their cuts bring back to the fore what had been a central concern among investors less than two years ago: That a slowing global economy could hamper companies’ ability to service their obligations, especially those that had taken on significant debt loads to finance deals.
  • While many firms took actions to reduce debt levels in 2019, several are still proving to be susceptible to ratings risk. Kraft Heinz alone, with around $21 billion of debt leaving the Bloomberg Barclays investment-grade index at the end of this month, nearly eclipses last year’s fallen angel volume of just under $22 billion, according to Bank of America Corp. strategists. Macy’s has about $8 billion of total debt, while Renault’s roughly $66 billion is predominantly denominated in euros and yen, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
  • By year-end, the volume of fallen angels is likely to dwarf that of 2019, according UBS Group AG strategists led by Matthew Mish. They predict there could be as much as $90 billion of investment-grade debt downgraded to high yield this year. Guggenheim Partners has said as much as 20% of BBBs in the U.S., or $660 billion, will get cut to junk in the next downgrade wave.


(Reuters)  U.S. labor market remains strong; manufacturing likely stabilizing


  • The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits rose modestly last week, suggesting sustained labor market strength that could help to support the economy amid risks from the coronavirus and weak business investment.
  • There was encouraging news on the struggling manufacturing sector, with other data on Thursday showing factory activity in the mid-Atlantic region accelerated to a three-year high in February, likely as tensions in the 19-month trade war between the United States and China diminished.
  • But the coronavirus, which has killed more than 2,000 people, mostly in China, and Boeing’s suspension last month of the production of its troubled 737 MAX jetliner, grounded in March 2019 after two fatal crashes, continue to loom over the manufacturing sector.
  • Minutes of the Federal Reserve’s Jan. 28-29 meeting published on Wednesday showed policymakers “expected economic growth to continue at a moderate pace,” but expressed concern about possible economic risks from the coronavirus, which has also infected thousands globally.
  • “Manufacturing growth may be past its trough,” said Oren Klachkin, lead U.S. economist at Oxford Economics in New York. “However, looking ahead we continue to believe that activity will advance at a lackluster pace as global growth and trade policy headwinds are unlikely to significantly relent and the negative impact of the coronavirus will be felt via global supply chains interlinkages.”



(Bloomberg)  Aecom Conference Cancellation May Increase Deal Rumblings



  • Reports on Aecom not attending two industrial conferences this week are being “seen as a positive indication that the company might be in later-stage negotiations for a deal,” Baird analyst Andrew Wittmann wrote in a note.
  • Baird confirmed that Aecom canceled from a Citi conference, and is not in attendance at a Barclays conference
  • Wittmann noted previous reports that Aecom had been approached by WSP Global regarding a deal
14 Feb 2020

CAM High Yield Weekly Insights

Fund Flows & Issuance: According to a Wells Fargo report, flows week to date were $2.4 billion and year to date flows stand at $3.7 billion. New issuance for the week was $12.4 billion and year to date issuance is at $60.6 billion.



(Bloomberg) High Yield Market Highlights


  • Zayo Group Holdings Inc. is readying more than $3 billion of junk bonds, one of the biggest buyout financings since 2018 that may test investor appetite for riskier debt in the CAA tier.
  • The new notes, along with a leveraged loan package totaling more than $5b, will finance Zayo’s buyout by private equity firms Digital Colony Partners and EQT Partners
  • The bond portion of the offering may include $1b of seven-year secured notes and $2.1b of unsecured eight-year bonds, and marketing begins next Tuesday
  • It’s hitting the market after two straight weeks of gains for junk- bonds, which looks set to continue on Friday as stock futures edge higher and oil climbs
  • Triple C rated bonds have lagged the broader high-yield market so far this year, returning 0.942% through Thursday while the larger junk universe rose 1.11%
  • Yet CAA index yields have still fallen to a nine-month low of 9.71% and posted positive returns for three consecutive sessions this week. Other issuers, including Hecla Mining, have also priced debt in this rating range
  • Investors have plenty of cash to put to work too after corporate high-yield funds reported inflows
  • BA and single-B yields have fallen to a three- week low of 3.59% and 5%, respectively
  • BAs have gained for ten straight sessions, taking year-to-date returns to 1.175%  


  • (Bloomberg) Natural Gas Tumbles to 4-Year Low on ‘Epic’ U.S. Demand Loss


  • Natural gas futures sank to a four-year low as the latest U.S. forecasts all but eliminated bulls’ hopes for a late-winter cold push.
  • Frigid weather in parts of the Midwest and West this week won’t stick around for long, according to Commodity Weather Group LLC. Mild temperatures are poised to blanket the eastern half of the country in late February, a shift from previous outlooks that showed a lingering chill.
  • Unusually warm winter weather has wreaked havoc on gas demand, allowing an onslaught of supply from shale basins to overwhelm the market. American liquefied natural gas cargoes, a key outlet for production, are at risk of being curtailed as the coronavirus outbreak in China curbs consumption in the world’s second-largest economy. The resulting collapse in global gas prices is squeezing profits for U.S. exporters.
  • “The lack of heating demand is epic. It’s a worst-case scenario,” John Kilduff, founding partner at hedge fund Again Capital LLC in New York, said by phone. “We continue to have a very weak demand environment that’s persisted all winter.”
  • The gas glut has been especially severe in the Permian Basin, where local prices for March delivery have dropped below zero. Output from the West Texas and New Mexico shale play, where gas is extracted as a byproduct of oil drilling, is increasing so fast there isn’t enough space on pipelines to take it away.  


(Reuters) T-Mobile-Sprint merger wins approval from U.S. judge

  • T-Mobile edged closer to a takeover of Sprint Corp after a federal judge on Tuesday approved the deal, rejecting a claim by a group of states that said the proposed transaction would violate antitrust laws and raise prices.
  • During a two-week trial in December, T-Mobile and Sprint argued the merger will better equip the new company to compete with top players Verizon Communications Inc and AT&T Inc as the third-largest U.S. wireless carrier, creating a more efficient company with low prices and faster internet speeds.
  • Finalizing a deal will be a boon to Japan’s Softbank Group Corp, Sprint’s controlling shareholder, as the conglomerate offloads a troubled asset that has lost subscribers at a faster rate and as it seeks to secure funding for a second Vision Fund.
  • Sprint and T-Mobile said in a statement that they would move to finalize the merger, which is still subject to closing conditions and possible additional court proceedings.
  • A spokesman for the California Public Utilities Commission, the last regulatory body to decide on the merger, said its review of the deal is expected to conclude in July.


(Wall Street Journal) MGM Resorts Chief Set To Step Down


  • MGM Resorts International Chief Executive Jim Murren will leave the global casino operator after its board picks his successor, the company said.
  • Mr. Murren, who is also stepping down as chairman, has led the company since 2008. He is leaving before his contract expires at the end of 2021.
  • “When I thought through how I could best serve MGM going forward, I thought it was pretty clear that a leader should help lead a company into the next decade or two,” Mr. Murren said on a conference call with Wall Street analysts on Wednesday. “I wanted to make sure the board had the time, which it will use promptly, to do a robust search and find my successor.”
  • MGM Resorts, which has a market value of $17 billion, didn’t give a firm date for Mr. Murren’s departure. The board has formed a search committee to find a new CEO, the company said. Mr. Murren said he anticipates being on MGM Resorts’ next quarterly earnings call, in about three months.
  • The company has sold off much of its real estate, including deals with MGM Growth Properties, a real-estate investment trust MGM Resorts spun off in 2016, and other property deals. The company’s “asset-light” strategy is intended to pull cash out of the company’s valuable real estate, including prime locations on the Las Vegas Strip.
  • MGM Resorts’ remaining company-owned real estate includes MGM Springfield in Massachusetts, a 50% stake in CityCenter in Las Vegas and more than half of MGM Growth Properties.  






07 Feb 2020

CAM High Yield Weekly Insights

Fund Flows & Issuance:  According to a Wells Fargo report, flows week to date were $0.1 billion and year to date flows stand at $1.2 billion.  New issuance for the week was $12.5 billion and year to date issuance is at $48.2 billion.


(Bloomberg)  High Yield Market Highlights 

  • New issues have been well-received
  • Yet it’s looking like a risk-off day as stock futures slide on renewed fears of the spread of the coronavirus
  • Junk- bond yields have fallen 24bps in the past week. At 5.28%, they’re just 30bps off the 5.5-year low hit on Jan. 21
  • Spreads have tightened 34bps over the same period to 356bps over Treasuries
  • Even riskier debt has rallied with yields on CAAs falling below 10% for the first time in two weeks to 9.95%
  • Junk- bond investors are pouring money back into exchange-traded funds again
  • HYG and JNK, the two biggest high-yield ETFs, reported a combined inflow of $325m yesterday after $630m the previous day


(New York Times)  Some Takeaways From Trump’s State of the Union Address

  • President Trump framed his third year in office as an unmistakable success and his fourth as more of the same.
  • A partisan atmosphere loomed over the House floor from the very start of Mr. Trump’s speech, when Republican lawmakers chanted “four more years” after the president stepped up to the rostrum. The hostility carried through to the end, when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi ripped up a copy of the address after he finished delivering it.
  • He proclaimed that the economy was setting records, that American enemies were on the defense, and that the American spirit had been renewed.
  • “In just three short years, we have shattered the mentality of American decline and we have rejected the downsizing of America’s destiny,” he said. “We are moving forward at a pace that was unimaginable just a short time ago and we are never going back.”
  • Trump dived into the state of the economy at the top of the speech, making broad declarations about tax cuts, deregulation and the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, the new version of which he signed into law last week.
  • Trump addressed two pieces of potential health care legislation that remain a top priority for both parties in the coming months: surprise billing and prescription drugs.
  • After signing an initial trade deal with China last month, Mr. Trump pointed on Tuesday to the tariffs he has imposed on the country in order to take on its “massive theft of America’s jobs.” He said that “our strategy has worked.”
  • Trump’s attention on foreign policy later swung to the Middle East, when he highlighted two people his administration killed in recent months: Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the Islamic State, and Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani, the powerful Iranian commander.


(Wall Street Journal)  Ford’s Operating Income Plunges

  • Ford Motor Co. said fourth-quarter operating income sank by two-thirds, and it issued a lower-than-expected profit outlook for 2020, the latest signs of trouble for Chief Executive Jim Hackett’s turnaround plan.
  • Ford said operating income for the October-to-December period was $485 million, down from $1.5 billion a year earlier. Earnings per share adjusted for one-time items were 12 cents, well short of analysts’ estimate of 17 cents.
  • The company’s financial standing has continued to weaken under Mr. Hackett, who was brought in nearly three years ago to revive the auto maker’s profit growth and give it a stronger vision for the future.
  • Revenue for the full year dropped 3% to $155.9 billion.
  • “Financially, it wasn’t OK,” finance chief Tim Stone said of the 2019 results during a discussion with reporters at Ford’s headquarters. “Strategically. . .I think we made strong progress.”
  • Ford pinned the shortfall in part on lower production volumes in North America stemming from problems with launches of key models, including the redesigned Explorer and Escape sport-utility vehicles and its Super Duty pickup truck. It also cited higher warranty costs and a bonus payout to United Auto Workers that totaled about $600 million.
  • The auto maker forecast operating profit this year of $5.6 billion to $6.6 billion, compared with $6.38 billion last year. That equals an earnings-per-share range of 94 cents to $1.20, which is lower than the average analysts’ estimate of $1.30, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence.
  • Hackett’s strategy to revitalize Ford — which includes a multiyear, multibillion-dollar restructuring — hasn’t returned the company to earnings growth or restored profitability overseas, where Ford is closing plants and shedding thousands of workers to cut costs.
  • “Financially, the company’s 2019 performance was short of our original expectations, mostly because our operational execution — which we usually do very well — wasn’t nearly good enough,” Mr. Hackett said. “We recognize, take accountability for and have made changes because of this.”
  • In a bright spot for the year, Ford trimmed its losses in overseas markets. It halved its China loss, to $771 million from $1.55 billion, which it attributed to cost cutting. In Europe, the company had a $47 million loss for the year, down from a $398 million loss a year earlier.
31 Jan 2020

CAM High Yield Weekly Insights

Fund Flows & Issuance:  According to a Wells Fargo report, flows week to date were -$2.7 billion.  New issuance for the week was $8.2 billion and year to date HY is at $35.7 billion.


(Bloomberg)  High Yield Market Highlights

  • S. junk-bonds are heading for their second weekly loss amid fears about the spreading coronavirus from China. Investors pulled $2.7 billion from high-yield retail funds, the biggest cash withdrawal in almost six months, and exchange-traded funds are continuing to leak cash.
  • Junk-bond returns turned negative for the second time this week posting a loss of 0.16% Thursday. The CAA index posted losses of 0.17% and is also set for its second weekly declines
  • Those falls may extend Friday with stock futures lower. Oil prices are higher this morning, but fell to an almost six-month low on Thursday, weighing on the high-yield energy index
  • Junk bond yields rose 9 basis points to 5.49%, the biggest weekly jump since October, while spreads widened 11 basis points to 382 basis points over Treasuries
  • Single-B yields jumped 10 basis points to 5.46%, while CAA yields rose 9 basis points to 10.32%
  • The two biggest high-yield ETFs — HYG and JNK — saw a combined outflow of $547 million in the last session as outflows continue


(Business Wire)  Arconic Reports Financial Results

  • Arconic Inc. reported fourth quarter 2019 and full year 2019 results. The Company reported fourth quarter revenues of $3.4 billion, down 2% year over year. Organic revenue was up 1% year over year on growth in the aerospace, packaging and industrial markets and favorable product pricing, largely offset by weakness in the automotive, commercial transportation, and building and construction markets.
  • Operating income excluding special items was $444 million, up 37% year over year, driven by net cost reductions, favorable product pricing, and favorable aluminum and raw material costs, partially offset by lower volumes in automotive and commercial transportation. Full year 2019 operating income was $1.0 billion versus $1.3 billion in the full year 2018. Operating income excluding special items for full year 2019 was $1.8 billion versus $1.4 billion in the full year 2018, driven by favorable product pricing; net cost reductions; volume growth in aerospace, packaging and commercial transportation markets; and favorable aluminum and raw material costs. These impacts were partially offset by unfavorable product mix.
  • Arconic Chairman and Chief Executive Officer John Plant said, “In 2019, the Arconic team delivered improved revenue, adjusted operating income, adjusted operating income margin, adjusted free cash flow and adjusted earnings per share. Arconic’s 2019 return on net assets improved by 450 basis points year over year to 13.7%.”


(Bloomberg)  Fed Holds Main Rate as Powell Stresses Need to Hit 2% Inflation

  • The Federal Reserve kept its key interest rate unchanged and continued to signal policy would stay on hold for the time being, while stressing the importance of lifting inflation to officials’ target.
  • The central bank also made a technical adjustment to the rate it pays on reserve balances and said it would extend at least through April a program aimed at smoothing volatility in
    money markets.
  • “We believe monetary policy is well positioned to serve the American people by supporting continued economic growth,” Chairman Jerome Powell told a press conference Wednesday in Washington.
  • Officials kept the target range of the benchmark federal funds rate at 1.5% to 1.75% and called that stance “appropriate to support sustained expansion of economic activity.”
  • S. stocks erased gains while yields on the 10-year Treasury note declined and the dollar fluctuated. Traders extended bets the Fed would cut rates toward the end of this year.
  • “The Fed has made it clear that the barriers to move in either direction are quite high,” said said Daniel Ahn, the chief U.S. economist at BNP Paribas. “But we believe the wall
    for a cut is lower than the wall for a hike.” He detected a “dovish tilt” in Powell’s efforts to stress the Fed was uncomfortable with inflation running persistently too low.
  • Policy makers changed their statement to say that the current stance of monetary policy is appropriate to support “inflation returning to the committee’s symmetric 2% objective.” Previously they had said policy was supporting inflation “near” the goal.
  • Powell explained in his press conference that the change was made to send “a clearer signal” that the committee was not comfortable with inflation running persistently below target. “We wanted to underscore our commitment to 2% not being a ceiling,” he said.
  • Their preferred gauge of price pressures — the personal consumption expenditures price index — rose 1.5% for the 12 months ending in November. Powell said inflation was expected to move closer to 2% over the next few months thanks to so-called base effects, “as unusually low readings from early 2019 drop out of the calculation.”


24 Jan 2020

CAM High Yield Weekly Insights

Fund Flows & Issuance:  According to a Wells Fargo report, flows week to date were $0.9 billion.  New issuance for the week was $13.2 billion and year to date HY is at $27.4 billion.


(Bloomberg)  High Yield Market Highlights

  • S. junk bonds posted a third straight day of losses as issuance neared $32 billion, the most for a January in more than a decade.
  • Borrowers are rushing to take advantage of low rates before the window closes
  • Markets may see support today as stock futures climb on economic data and investors set aside concerns about a deadly virus from China hampering growth
  • Yields rose 8bps to 5.17%, a three week high, as stocks fluctuated and oil dropped to an eight-week low
  • Spreads widened 8bps to +340, a six week high
  • Energy yields jumped 30bps to 8.56%, the biggest increase in more than five months
  • Energy index posted a loss of 0.675%, the biggest loss since October,
  • CAA yields were back at 10%, returns were negative for a third day
  • Retail funds have reported three straight weeks of inflow, the longest streak in almost three months


(Wall Street Journal)  Glut Pushes Natural Gas Prices Below $2 

  • The price of natural gas typically rises this time of year as temperatures plunge and homeowners dial up their thermostats. Instead, the price of the heating and electricity-generating fuel has dropped to multiyear lows.
  • On Tuesday, natural-gas futures fell below $2 per million British thermal units to their lowest level in nearly four years, highlighting how a persistent glut has buffeted energy investors and producers. This winter’s mild weather has joined an oversupply of the commodity to push natural-gas prices down to levels not seen since March 2016. On Tuesday, futures fell 5.4% to $1.895 per MMBtu.
  • The shale boom, spurred by horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing techniques, has transformed the U.S. energy industry and flooded the market with oil and natural gas in recent years. The decline in prices has hit shares of energy companies, raising calls for them to curtail production. But few analysts see signs of the glut abating soon: The U.S. Energy Information Administration predicts dry natural-gas production in the U.S. will rise by 2.9% in 2020.
  • The fall in prices has come faster than analysts and traders had predicted. Colder winter temperatures typically drive up prices as homeowners demand more fuel to heat their houses. However, warmer-than-expected weather this season has helped drive prices down, adding to investors’ grim outlook.
  • On Tuesday, oil-field services company Halliburton Co. said it swung to a loss in 2019 on a decline in revenue that it blamed on diminished drilling onshore in North America, which in turn was due to low commodity prices.
  • “Gas prices in the U.S. are below break-even levels,” Chief Executive Jeffrey Miller told analysts and investors. Mr. Miller said that he expects a 10% reduction in spending among the oil-field services company’s customers in North America, with the bulk of those cuts coming in gas-producing regions. Halliburton has been idling equipment to match customers’ reduced needs, he said.


(Bloomberg)  Junk Bond Volume Nears $30 Billion in Refi Frenzy

  • The U.S. junk-bond market is on track for its busiest January in at least a decade with volume poised to exceed $30 billion as companies rush to refinance at cheap rates.
  • At least seven issuers are looking to sell debt on Thursday after an already hectic pace. Those deals will potentially take new issue volume to $30.8 billion, the most for any January since 2006, according to data compiled by Bloomberg
  • Companies are mostly selling debt to refinance. Some of those issuers are replacing loans with bonds
  • Garda World Security, owned by private-equity firm BC Partners, is marketing $400 million 7 year senior secured notes to take out a term loan
  • It’s at least the third company to do so this month amid more favorable pricing — in some cases — for bonds
  • Another BC Partners portfolio company, Presidio, priced secured bonds at a cheaper rate than loans last week
  • Grocer Albertsons also sold $2.35 billion of bonds on Wednesday to refinance loans
  • The primary market appears open to the deals in the lowest CAA junk rating tier. Community Health and Altice are in market with bonds that have at least one rating in that range
  • Junk-bond spreads widened to a two-week high on Wednesday, and may weaken more as stocks fall and oil prices fall to an almost eight-week low of $55.51 a barrel
17 Jan 2020

CAM High Yield Weekly Insights

Fund Flows & Issuance:  According to a Wells Fargo report, flows week to date were $2.0 billion.  New issuance for the week was $8.1 billion and year to date HY is at $14.2 billion.


(Bloomberg)  High Yield Market Highlights

  • Triple C-rated debt is leading the rally in high-yield as returns for the year jump to 1.23% and yields on the lowest tier of junk fall below 10% for the first time in seven months.
  • Triple C spreads tightened 10bps to 823bps over Treasuries, according to Bloomberg Barclays index data. That’s a more than five-month low and extends a recovery from over 1,000 bps in November
  • Energy is powering CCC. The energy index yield fell to 7.99%, a new six-month low
  • Junk-bond yields dropped to 5.01%, just 5bps off the 5.5-year low of 4.96%. They may fall further as stock futures rise amid easing trade tensions and a solid start to the earnings season. Oil is also up this morning to almost $59 a barrel


(Bloomberg)  Encompass Health Boosts Fiscal Year Operating Revenue View

  • Encompass Health boosted its operating revenue forecast for the full year; the guidance midpoint met the average analyst estimate.
  • Encompass sees FY operating revenue $4.59 billion to $4.61 billion, saw $4.5 billion to $4.6 billion, estimate $4.59 billion (range $4.57 billion to $4.61 billion)
  • Encompass sees FY adjusted EPS from continuing operations $3.90 to $3.94, saw $3.71 to $3.85
  • Encompass sees FY adjusted Ebitda $962 million to $967 million, saw $940.0 million to $960.0 million, estimate $952.2 million (range $942.0 million to $957.0 million)
  • Encompass sees 2020 Adjusted EPS Continuing Operations $3.50 to $3.72, Est. $3.68


(Bloomberg)  WSP Is Said to Approach Engineering Firm Aecom About Deal

  • Canada’s WSP Global Inc. has approached rival engineering services firm Aecom about a possible deal, according to people familiar with the matter. There’s no guarantee that the overture will lead to a transaction, said the people, who asked to not be identified
    because the matter isn’t public.
  • Aecom, which had been targeted by activist investor Starboard Value last year, agreed in October to sell its management services division to a group of private equity firms
    for $2.4 billion.
  • The potential acquisition would give WSP more exposure to the U.S. and could lead to cost savings of about $200 million, Deutsche Bank analyst Chad Dillard wrote in a note to clients Tuesday.
  • Aecom’s services include consulting, planning, architecture, engineering and construction management, according to its website. While it has a growing backlog thanks to a steady stream of government and infrastructure contracts, profits have stagnated in recent years due to inefficiencies and construction contract
    losses, according to a Bloomberg Intelligence report in December.


(Wall Street Journal)  MGM, Blackstone Strike Casino Deal

  • MGM Resorts International said a joint venture that includes Blackstone Group Inc. would buy the real estate of the MGM Grand and Mandalay Bay resorts and casinos on the Las Vegas Strip, in a deal valuing the properties at $4.6 billion.
  • The deal values MGM Grand’s real-estate assets at about $2.5 billion and Mandalay Bay’s at just over $2 billion.
  • Blackstone will own slightly less than half of the properties through the private-equity and real-estate giant’s nonlisted real-estate investment trust, while MGM Growth Properties LLC, a publicly traded REIT, will own the remainder.
  • MGM Resorts spun off MGM Growth Properties in 2016 and still controls the REIT, which owns some MGM real estate including Mandalay Bay’s.
  • MGM Resorts expects to receive cash proceeds of about $2.4 billion from the deal, as well as $85 million in MGM Growth partnership units.
10 Jan 2020

CAM High Yield Weekly Insights

Fund Flows & Issuance:  According to a Wells Fargo report, flows week to date were $0.9 billion and new issuance for the week $6.1 billion.


(Bloomberg)  High Yield Market Highlights

  • S. high-yield bonds are set for the longest streak of weekly gains since the first half of 2019 as the global hunt for yield continues to bolster the market.
  • The Bloomberg Barclays U.S. high-yield index has posted gains each day this week as yields held steady at 5.11% through Thursday, one basis point lower on the week.
  • The high-yield energy index weighed on performance as oil prices lost steam earlier in the week. The securities posted losses for the second consecutive day on Thursday, losing 0.13%; yields on energy bonds ended at 8.12%.
  • Even while oil prices dropped back to levels before the Mideast tensions began, issuance activity was driven by energy borrowers.


(Reuters)  Fed focuses on repo market exit strategy after avoiding year-end crunch 

  • Wall Street’s worst fears of a year-end funding squeeze never materialized thanks in large part to the quarter-trillion dollars the Federal Reserve stuffed into the market to ensure nothing became gummed up.
  • The question now, though, is what it will take for the U.S. central bank to withdraw from its daily liquidity operations in the $2.2 trillion market for repurchase agreements, or repos – after it became a dominant player in a short three months.
  • “The repo operations are a band-aid, but the wound isn’t healed fully,” said Gennadiy Goldberg, an interest rate strategist at TD Securities.
  • The New York Fed began injecting billions of dollars of liquidity into the repo market in mid-September, when a confluence of events sent the cost of overnight loans as high as 10%, more than four times the Fed’s rate at the time. A month later, the Fed moved to expand its balance sheet – and boost the level of reserves – by snapping up $60 billion a month in U.S. Treasury bills.
  • The Fed will continue pumping tens of billions a day into the repo market through at least the end of January. Its ability to exit from the repo market after that time will depend on how long it takes the central bank to make the balance sheet large enough so there are adequate reserves in the banking system – and the repo operations are no longer needed.
  • “It seems implausible to me that the Fed will be able to stop their repo operations by the end of January,” said Mark Cabana, head of U.S. rates strategy at Bank of America Merrill Lynch.


(Company Report)  Tenneco Inc. plans to streamline its leadership structure

  • The Company announced that Brian Kesseler, Tenneco’s Co-Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors, will assume the newly consolidated role of Chief Executive Officer of Tenneco. Kesseler will oversee the operations of the New Tenneco business, in addition to continuing to oversee the DRiV business. Roger Wood will no longer serve as Tenneco’s Co-Chief Executive Officer and is stepping down as a Director of the Company, effective immediately.
  • Jason Hollar will continue to serve as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Tenneco overseeing the financial organizations of both DRiV and New Tenneco.
  • “On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to thank Roger for his dedication to Tenneco during a critical time for our company,” said Gregg M. Sherrill, Chairman of the Tenneco Board. “We appreciate his service and contributions in leading the New Tenneco business as we began the integration of the Federal-Mogul acquisition. As we pursue the separation of our businesses, the Board determined that consolidating our leadership structure now will help improve Tenneco’s operational efficiency and achieve our near-term financial performance objectives. We wish Roger the very best in his future endeavors.”
  • During 2020, Tenneco will be focused on the execution of its accelerated performance improvement plan to facilitate the expected separation of the businesses.
  • As previously discussed in the Company’s third quarter release on October 31, 2019, current end-market conditions are affecting the Company’s ability to complete a separation in the mid-year 2020 time range. The Company expects that these trends will continue throughout this year. The Company is ready to separate the businesses as soon as favorable conditions are present.
29 Nov 2019

CAM High Yield Weekly Insights

CAM High Yield Market Note



This is an abbreviated Note due to the Thanksgiving holiday. Happy Thanksgiving!


Fund Flows & Issuance: According to a Wells Fargo report, flows week to date were $0.2 billion and year to date flows stand at $23.5 billion. New issuance for the week was $12.8 billion and year to date HY is at $251.1 billion, which is +55% over the same period last year.



(Bloomberg) Single and Double B Junk Bond Returns Hit 2019 Peak Amid Rally


  • Junk bond returns are creeping back to record highs after three consecutive days of gains.
  • Junk bond year-to-date returns rose to 11.928%, inching closer to the highs of just over 12% reached earlier this month. Index yields were unchanged, closing at a two-week low of 5.64%
  • BB returns hit a year-to-date peak of 13.944%, while single B returns set a new high at 12.553%
  • CCCs are also catching a bid, boosted by a lift in energy bonds, after posting gains for three straight sessions to take year-to-date returns to 4.101%. That comes less than a week after CCC spreads jumped above 1,000bps over U.S. Treasuries for the first time in more than three years 
08 Nov 2019

CAM High Yield Weekly Insights

Fund Flows & Issuance:  According to a Wells Fargo report, flows week to date were $1.6 billion and year to date flows stand at $24.4 billion.  New issuance for the week was $3.8 billion and year to date HY is at $219.3 billion, which is +37% over the same period last year.


(Bloomberg)  High Yield Market Highlights 

  • S. junk bonds rebounded as equities rallied to a record high and the 10Y UST yield jumped. The debt may open on a softer note as stock futures declined and oil prices dropped amid uncertainty over supply cuts.
  • The debt’s returns turned positive on Thursday after a two-day losing streak as equities climbed to a new high. Year-to-date returns were 12.01%, just 9bps off the 2019 peak
  • Gains were across ratings, with single-Bs posting the most at 0.1% and YTD at 12.39%
  • Junk bond yields were little changed. Single-Bs dropped 6bps to close at 5.68% and BBs closed at 3.88%, down 2bps
  • Spreads held firm across ratings moving in tandem with UST yields
  • There was lull in the primary market with just two drive-by deals for $1.1b pricing yesterday
  • Yesterday’s deals took the November volume to $4.98b
  • As investors turned cautious of weaker credits, Wesco’s $2.18b bond offering faced some resistance and its pricing was delayed


(Reuters)  U.S. may not need to impose auto tariffs this month 

  • The United States may not need to impose tariffs on imported vehicles later this month after holding “good conversations” with automakers in the European Union, Japan and Korea, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said in an interview published on Sunday.
  • The United States must decide by Nov. 14 whether to impose threatened U.S. national security tariffs of as much as 25% on vehicles and parts. The tariffs have already been delayed once by six months, and trade experts say that could happen again.
  • “We have had very good conversations with our European friends, with our Japanese friends, with our Korean friends, and those are the major auto producing sectors,” Ross said.
  • “Our hope is that the negotiations we have been having with individual companies about their capital investment plans will bear enough fruit that it may not be necessary to put the 232 (tariffs) fully into effect, may not even be necessary to put it partly in effect,” he added.


(Business Wire)  The GEO Group Reports Third Quarter 2019 Results

  • GEO reported third quarter 2019 net income attributable to GEO of $45.9 million, compared to $39.3 million, for the third quarter 2018. GEO reported total revenues for the third quarter 2019 of $631.6 million up from $583.5 million for the third quarter 2018.
  • GEO reported third quarter 2019 Normalized Funds From Operations (“Normalized FFO”) of $70.3 million, compared to $62.9 million, for the third quarter 2018. GEO reported third quarter 2019 Adjusted Funds From Operations (“AFFO”) of $85.6 million, compared to $77.9 million, for the third quarter 2018.
  • George C. Zoley, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of GEO, said, “We are pleased with our strong quarterly financial performance, which reflect strong fundamentals and growing earnings. During the quarter, we reactivated 4,600 previously idle beds, which are expected to drive future cash flow growth. We are proud to have published our first-ever Human Rights and ESG report in September, highlighting our long-standing commitment to respecting the human rights of all those in our care, as well as, the continued success of our GEO Continuum of Care enhanced rehabilitation and post-release programs. We believe that our current dividend payment is supported by stable and predictable cash flows, and we expect to continue to apply our growing excess cash flow towards paying down debt.”
  • During the third quarter 2019, GEO repurchased approximately $34 million of senior unsecured notes due 2022. GEO also closed on a $44 million, 15-year real estate loan bearing interest at 4.22 percent annually. At the end of the third quarter, GEO had approximately $395 million in available borrowing capacity under its $900 million revolving credit facility, which matures in May 2024.


(Business Wire)  Arconic Reports Third Quarter 2019 Results

  • The Company continues to target the completion of the separation in the second quarter 2020. We expect the Form 10 filing to be available in the fourth quarter 2019. The Engineered Products and Forgings businesses (engine products, fastening systems, engineered structures and forged wheels) will remain in the existing company (Remain Co.), which will be renamed Howmet Aerospace Inc. at separation. The Global Rolled Products businesses (global rolled products, aluminum extrusions and building and construction systems) will comprise Spin Co. and will be named Arconic Corporation at separation.
  • Arconic Inc. reported third quarter 2019 results, for which the Company reported revenues of $3.6 billion, up 1% year over year. Organic revenue was up 6% year over year on strong volumes across all key markets and favorable pricing in the Engineered Products and Forgings segment, and volume growth in packaging, industrial, and aerospace markets as well as favorable pricing in the Global Rolled Products segment.
  • Third quarter 2019 operating income was $326 million, versus operating income of $345 million in the third quarter 2018. Operating income excluding special items was $475 million, up 36% year over year, as favorable product pricing, higher volume, favorable aluminum prices, and net cost reductions more than offset operational challenges in the aluminum extrusions business and unfavorable product mix.
  • Arconic Chairman and Chief Executive Officer John Plant said, “In the third quarter 2019, the Arconic team delivered improved quarterly revenue, adjusted operating income, adjusted operating income margin, adjusted free cash flow and adjusted earnings per share on a year-over-year basis. Arconic’s third quarter 2019 return on net assets improved by 550 basis points year over year. We expect this positive year-over-year trend to continue in the fourth quarter. Based on our performance through the first nine months of 2019 and our outlook for the remainder of 2019, we are increasing our full-year adjusted earnings per share guidance for the third time in 2019.”
  • Arconic ended the third quarter 2019 with cash on hand of $1.3 billion. Cash provided from operations was $52 million; cash used for financing activities totaled $202 million, reflecting the impact of the accelerated share repurchase program of $200 million; and cash provided from investing activities was $117 million. Adjusted Free Cash Flow for the quarter was $154 million.
01 Nov 2019

CAM High Yield Weekly Insights

CAM High Yield Market Note



Fund Flows & Issuance: According to a Wells Fargo report, flows week to date were $1.1 billion and year to date flows stand at $22.9 billion. New issuance for the week was $5.9 billion and year to date HY is at $215.4 billion, which is +36% over the same period last year.



(Bloomberg) High Yield Market Highlights


  • U.S. junk bonds are set to rebound from a three-day decline to open higher this morning as stock futures advance on the heels of better-than-expected manufacturing data from China and as oil prices rise after a four-day losing streak.
  • Junk bonds fell for the third straight session and reported a loss of 0.15%, the longest losing streak in almost five weeks. Spreads are 38bps wider in the past four days at 392bps over U.S. Treasuries
  • CCCs posted a loss of 0.29%, the most across high yield yesterday, taking year-to-date returns down to 5.38%. CCC yields surged to a nine-month high of 11.25% and spreads widened the most in 10 months to 969bps
  • Investors, though cautious, continued to allocate cash to high-yield for the week
  • Supply has ground to a halt with no new deals announced or priced in the past two days but there are some in the pipeline that could emerge soon.  


  • (Bloomberg) Extended Junk Rally Squeezes Spread Between BBB and BB to Record 
  • The difference between BBB and BB U.S. corporate bond spreads collapsed further as investors continued chasing yield in the highest-rated junk bonds
    • The differential between the best high yield and worst investment grade hit a fresh post-credit crisis low amid continued inflows to bond funds and negative yielding debt
    • The compression is making it so investors may have to start reaching even further down the ratings spectrum to find value
    • The differential between BBB and BB was 49 basis points Monday morning, a new record


(Business Wire)  Western Digital Announces CEO Succession Plan


  • Western Digital Corp. announced that Steve Milligan, chief executive officer and a member of the Western Digital Board of Directors (“the Board”) since January 2013, has informed the Board that he intends to retire as the Company’s CEO. Milligan will continue to serve as CEO until the Board has identified and appointed a successor, and then will remain with the Company in an advisory role until September 2020 to ensure a smooth transition. He will also remain a director on the Company’s Board for a transition period after his successor is appointed.
  • The Board has initiated a search to identify Western Digital’s next CEO, and has engaged Heidrick & Struggles, a leading executive search firm, to assist in the process. In order to facilitate a comprehensive process, the Board will evaluate both internal and external candidates.
  • “The Board and management team are committed to ensuring a smooth transition, and we are grateful that we’ll continue to benefit from Steve’s experience and perspective throughout this process,” said Matthew Massengill, chairman of the Board. “As the Board conducts its search for Steve’s successor, we are focused on identifying a strong leader with a proven track record of operating successfully at scale while defining and executing a growth strategy driven by innovation, operational excellence, and world-class talent development.”


(PR Newswire)  Tenneco Reports Third Quarter 2019 Results


  • Tenneco Inc. reported third quarter 2019 revenue of $4.3 billion, versus $2.4 billiona year ago, including $1.8 billion from acquisitions.  On a constant currency pro forma basis, total revenue increased 3% versus last year, while light vehicle industry production declined 3% in the quarter.
  • Third quarter EBIT was $148 millionincluding the acquired Federal-Mogul business, versus $112 million last year.  EBIT as a percent of revenue was 3.4% versus 4.7% last year.   Cash generated from operations was $164 million.
  • Light vehicle production in the fourth quarter is expected to be lower year-over-year by 6%, and the commercial truck market is showing signs of softening in the quarter. In this environment, Tenneco expects fourth quarter revenue in the range of $3.95 billionto $4.05 billion.  Further, the company expects its fourth quarter adjusted EBITDA to be in the range of $295 million to $315 million, including year-over-year margin improvement of approximately 50 basis points in the DRiV division. The company expects the GM labor stoppage to have a negative impact on EBITDA of approximately $35 million.
  • The company has made significant progress on the administrative separation of the two business divisions into two independent companies
  • Tenneco remains committed to the separation of the businesses and continues to execute its plan for the spin off. Additionally, the company is evaluating multiple strategic options to deleverage and facilitate the separation.  Certain of these options could help mitigate the impact of challenging market conditions, which, if current trends were to continue, would likely affect the company’s ability to complete a separation in the mid-year 2020 time range.


Reuters)  U.S. Fed cuts interest rates, signals it is on hold


  • The Federal Reserve on Wednesday cut interest rates for the third time this year to help sustain U.S. growth despite a slowdown in other parts of the world, but signaled there would be no further reductions unless the economy takes a turn for the worse.
  • “We believe that monetary policy is in a good place,” Fed Chair Jerome Powell said in a news conference after the U.S. central bank announced its decision to cut its key overnight lending rate by a quarter of a percentage point to a target range of between 1.50% and 1.75%.
  • “We took this step to help keep the economy strong in the face of global developments and to provide some insurance against ongoing risks,” he said. “We see the current stance of monetary policy as likely to remain appropriate as long as incoming information about the economy remains broadly consistent with our outlook.”
  • In his news conference, Powell ticked off an extensive list of reasons why he feels the economy is doing well, and likely to continue to do so under the current stance of monetary policy – from robust consumer spending, strengthening home sales, and asset prices he considered healthy but not to a level of excess.
  • The outlook for the U.S. economy continues to be for “moderate” growth, a strong labor market and inflation rising back to the Fed’s 2% annual goal, he said, and only “a material reassessment” of that outlook could drive the central bank to cut rates further from here.