By John Lee.
Iraq opened the books yesterday on its first independent bond sale in a decade.
“Investor demand was huge,” writese Marcus Ashworth at Bloomberg. “The deal was seven times oversubscribed.”
The $1-billion, dollar-denominated bond, maturing in March 2023, was expected yield 7 percent, but demand enabled that to be cut to 6.75 percent.
In January, Iraq raised $1 billion of five-year bonds, guaranteed by the United States, at a coupon of 2.149 percent, but this latest bond is not guaranteed and depends on Iraq’s own creditworthiness. It is rated B- by both S&P and Fitch.
Iraq appointed Citi, Deutsche Bank and JP Morgan as joint bookrunners for the issue.
Meanwhile, the yield on the Iraqi 10-year bond (2028) has fallen from 9.3 percent in November to 6.7 percent.
(Sources: Bloomberg, Financial Times)