Commentary

#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.

Food for Thought

News reached us on North Carolina’s Outer Banks of an unusual find in an Egyptian tomb. Archeologists discovered a “mysterious white substance” in pots from the burial site of Ptahmes, a 13th century B.C. official. Chemical analysis proved it was cheese. Past Egyptologists have made similar findings. In 1942 one team reported something dating back

Summer School

For those of us with liberal arts degrees, the topic can be a sensitive one. We’re talking about those published surveys showing the best-and-worst paying college majors. Inevitably, engineers rule, and this year is no exception. According to a chart courtesy our friends at the Daily Shot [link], six of the top ten best paying

Fish in a Barrel

The San Antonio Aquarium was the site last week of an unusual heist. A horn shark was swiped from a petting pool by two men and a woman posing as employees of a marine salt supplier. They made off with the foot-and-a half long fish in a baby stroller. Police recovered the shark, named Miss

Splash Zone

To the best of our knowledge, the village of Innaarsuit, Greenland (pop. 169) is not on any “Best Summer Vacation” lists. Being in the Arctic Circle, it’s cold and dark most of the year. Not much exciting going on. But that has changed in a dramatic fashion. Last month an iceberg weighing 11 million tons

Terms of Endearment

Despite continued strong deal flow this month, conditions in the leveraged loan market remain constructive for issuers. Yes, there’s been push-back on specific transactions, as we’ve been highlighting. But cash keeps flowing into retail funds and new CLOs keep ramping. That’s providing more fuel to the broadly syndicated financings fire. The middle market is also

Half-Time Report (Last of a Series)

Every now and then stuff happens in leveraged lending that reassures us things we’ve learned about the market are actually true. Such was the case last Friday when a big bank credit trading desk noted unusual data on retail loan fund flows. Weekly outflows of $3.5 billion had been reported. That would have been a

Half-Time Report (Second of a Series)

“July 4th is the worst holiday,” one of our friends declared as our families sat watching the jaw-dropping fireworks display last Wednesday evening in Newport, RI. Huh? “Think about it,” he explained. “Now the summer will zoom by. Kids back in school last week of August. Then Labor Day. A month later, Halloween. Before you

Half-Time Report (First of a Series)

“2018 will be a good year for loans.” Back in January, that was the way we characterized what to expect in leveraged loan land for the year ahead. At the half-way mark, our forecast seems to be holding true. According to Thomson Reuters LPC, volume for the entire loan syndication market in the US hit