Commentary

Search and Recovery (Third of a series)

Continuing with our special series on leveraged loan recoveries, let’s turn to one of the most pondered questions on the subject; namely, how will covenant-lite loans fare in the next downturn? At a recent loan market conference, senior S&P analyst Ruth Yang reviewed the lite environment. She reminded attendees that broadly syndicated leveraged loans without

Search and Recovery (Second of a series)

News reached us from Harvard’s Astrophysics Center of an interstellar object of unknown origin spotted passing through our solar system. Named Oumuamua (Hawaiian for “scout”), the cigar-shaped “stadium-size” UFO demonstrated “excess acceleration” on its trek past the Sun and back out into space. Given the unusual trajectory, scientists theorized it could be “a fully operational

Search and Recovery (First of a series)

You know we’re at some kind of inflection point when two former chairs of the Federal Reserve come out in the same week with warnings about risks in financial markets. First, in an interview with the Financial Times, Paul Volcker spoke about systemic risks: “There’s a lot of leverage going on now, a lot of

Third Quarter Report (Last of a Series)

As the year has progressed, there’s been a growing bifurcation between the level of activity from middle market pure loan buyers and that of larger credit managers. Funds with less capacity have limited origination capability. They typically get product from loan syndicators, only able to hold tickets in the $10-40 million range. By contrast, a

Third Quarter Report (Second of a Series)

For two weeks in a row we’ve been blessed with memorable quotes from top market observers. We wrote in our last column about Fed chair Powell’s comment that the current cycle could go on “indefinitely.” This week’s nugget comes from our long-time friend, Steve Miller, the chief executive of Fulcrum Financial. “You can’t fight the

Third Quarter Report (First of a Series)

William McChesney Martin, the chairman of the Federal Reserve under five presidents from Truman to Nixon, famously said the Fed’s job was to remove the punch bowl just as the party was warming up. Seems like the current occupant of that job expects the bar to be open all night. As our Quote of the

Leveragin’ Loans

So much that was disturbing about the news last week. Social media was abuzz with opinions flying on both sides. Twitter was filled with long-submerged memories of crazy times hanging out at…everyone’s favorite orange-and-red java shops. We’re referring, of course, to the decision by Dunkin’ Donuts to drop “Donuts” from the brand name. In today’s

Big Game

Right on cue, with the tenth anniversary of Lehman’s collapse only now in our rear view mirrors, a mega-leveraged cross-border buyout “reminiscent” of 2007 hit the credit markets. At $17 billion, Blackstone’s purchase of a 55% share of Refinitiv, Thomson Reuters’ Risk and Markets business, represented one of the largest bank and bond deals since

#Yield Signs

Deep inside a cave some 200 miles east of Cape Town, South Africa, archeologists uncovered ancient markings that represent the earliest evidence of human drawing. The hashtag precurser – six parallel lines criss-crossed by three diagonals – was etched by a prehistoric artist over 73,000 years ago with a red ochre crayon on a small

Ten Years On – A Reflection

“With Lehman filing for bankruptcy, Merrill falling into the arms of B of A, and AIG scrambling to announce a restructuring plan, investors had their hands full to start this week. The Dow dropped 500 points as the Fed refused any Bear-type rescues. Now it may be morale hazard.” – On The Left, September 15, 2008.