Market Review

A Year in Review (Last of a Series)

2016 was the Chinese Year of the Monkey. We’re not sure what this meant, or how it applied to the middle market, but in looking at how loans spreads behaved throughout the year, there might have been some relationship. For one thing, all-in spreads swung around wildly month to month. February, according to LPC, was

A Year in Review (Third of a Series)

“How’s your pipeline?” we asked the head of one of the leading middle market arrangers in December. He shook his head. “The quality-adjusted deal flow is down.” That distinction resonated with a number of our middle market brethren. Complaints centered around ebitda adjustments, over-liberal debt allowance baskets, and covenant-lite (or covenant-wide) structures. “High leverage per

A Year in Review (Second of a Series)

Along with the sense that mid-cap lenders can now more than hold their own against the largest investment banks in terms of deal size has come a predictable question: With all the lending capacity that’s now available in the middle market, isn’t there too much cash chasing too few deals? A long-time middle market practitioner

A Year in Review (First of a Series)

The notion that the middle market has reached a level of maturity was supported by a plethora of evidence this past year. For one thing, arrangers showed astonishing underwriting capacity by taking on a number of large-cap sponsored buyouts. Probably the most precedent-setting was Qlik Technologies. At just over $1 billion, this Ares-led unitranche represented a