Middle East news round-up

Published: October 3, 2016

GCC banks set pace for US dollar bond issuance.


Issuers surge market ahead of Saudi Arabia’s arrival

Middle Eastern banks flooded the bond market at the end of summer with borrowers eager to print deals before the twin events of Eid and Saudi Arabia’s long-awaited US dollar bond.

Borrowers from the Gulf printed US$2.12bn of bonds in August and the first day of September, with Qatar National Bank making a return to the market after four years away.

“Let the floodgates open on new Middle East issuance,” said Tim Ash, a senior analyst at Nomura, “as the region takes advantage of a window provided by the up-tick in oil prices to get deals done, and money in the bank.”

QNB, rated Aa3 by Moody’s, A+ by S&P and AA- by Fitch, printed a US$1bn five-year deal that came almost flat to the issuer’s outstanding curve. 

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