“It’s Been A Long Year”

So bemoaned one friend from a broadly syndicated loan desk on Monday. We get it. As we covered in our first column of the year last week, there’s been enough to-ing and fro-ing in liquid markets in the past half-month to already fill your 2019 diary.

Such is the nature of today’s market velocity propelled by scary media headlines. It’s also where we are in the credit cycle. When teens are partying in the basement, no one expects parents coming downstairs at 7:30 pm. But around 2 am, ears start perking up...


Quote of the Week

“Leverage has switched all the way in favor of investors.” – John Gregory, head of leveraged syndicated desk, Wells Fargo Securities.

Featuring Charts

Chart of the Week: Annual Raise

January 16, 2019

2018 saw another increase in sponsored M&A volume in the middle market; up 12% from 2017.

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Chart of the Week: On the Rebound

January 9, 2019

Secondary prices for LPC’s top liquid loans rose almost 2%, as public markets have regained confidence over the past week.

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Chart of the Week: Best in Class

December 19, 2018

During the worst of the credit crisis the lower volatility of middle market loans is evident, compared to bonds or liquid loans.

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Chart of the Week: Downside Protection

December 12, 2018

At the depth of the credit crisis, middle market loan prices proved less volatile than their broadly syndicated counterparts.

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Chart of the Week: Bids Slid

December 5, 2018

Secondary loan bid levels have softened concurrent with overall public market volatility.

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Chart of the Week: Unilevered

November 28, 2018

Leverage for club middle market unitranche deals has stayed a constant 5x.

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The Pulse of Private Equity – 1/14/2019

Drawdown speeds and fund returns Download PitchBook’s Report here. US PE fundraising trended down in 2018. No surprise there—more than $200 billion was cumulatively raised in both 2016 and 2017, totaling nearly $442 billion altogether in the span of two years. As we’ve noted in the past, the current fundraising market bears a hint of opportunism,

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Leveraged Loan Insight & Analysis – 1/14/2019

Non-sponsored middle market lending increased to US$102bn but new money collapsed The non-sponsored market continued to tread along in 2018. Issuance was up for the second year in a row to US$102.3bn, but that was still far from 2014’s record and was driven by increased refi activity. Refinancing volume of US$81.3bn, was up 36% from

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PDI Picks – 1/14/2019

Investors want more info on fees LPs said they often have a hard time justifying them within their organisations. More than half of investors in the past 12 months have asked for greater fee transparency and disclosure from their general partners, according to PDI Perspectives 2019, our annual survey of limited partners....

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Private Debt Intelligence – 1/14/2019

Overview of Private Debt Fundraising in 2018 Private debt fundraising remained strong in 2018, making it the fourth consecutive year in which funds raised over $100bn. In 2018, 162 funds were able to secure an aggregate $110bn in capital. While this was slightly lower than the $129bn in capital raised in 2017, 2018 nonetheless represented

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Markit Recap – 1/7/2019

2018 ended on a sour note and spreads looked set to continue their ascent throughout this year and beyond. But here we are, a little over a week into 2019, and the Markit iTraxx Europe is 10bps tighter than Dec 31 levels. A bumper non-farm payrolls report, a more dovish stance from the Federal Reserve,

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Middle Market Deal Terms at a Glance

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State of the Capital Markets – Fourth Quarter 2018 Review and First Quarter 2019 Outlook

January 16, 2019

Review of Current Market Conditions/ Analysis of Capital Markets Metrics/ Review of Credit Quality/ Outlook for First Quarter 2019

Special Report: Spot-lite on Cov-lite

February 7, 2018

Beginning in October 2017 The Lead Left published a series of articles on covenant-lite. This report consolidates those articles.

Special Report: Private Credit vs. Public Debt

November 30, 2017

Beginning in March 2017 The Lead Left published a series of articles on private credit and public debt. This report consolidates those articles.