Feeding the Beast

The world’s oldest fruitcake was found in Antartica in a building left from the expedition of Robert Falcon Scott. The British explorer died during his 1912 attempt to reach the South Pole. But not apparently from eating the fruitcake. The perennial delicacy was found covered in ice, and left “wrapped in paper..and in its original container.”

One researcher said the early 20th century dessert was in “excellent condition” and “smelled almost edible.” Precisely how fruitcakes appear to us today.

Meanwhile, the leveraged loan market continues on its festive way. In its always- informative semi-annual webinar, Lincoln International noted last week the trends in private debt fundraising. This year is expected to reprise 2016’s robust performance when almost $58 billion was raised, compared to $23 billion in 2015.

The question was raised (but not settled) as to whether this cash is incremental dollars, or just recycled from existing platforms. Evidence for both may be found.

As Lincoln highlighted, public BDC valuations have slumped despite overall equities being on the upswing, reducing their cash available for investment. But private BDCs have jumped to