Despite triple-digit year-over year gains in real estate and high technology new issues, the volume of investment grade corporate debt from European issuers totals $197.0 billion for year-to-date 2013, a decline of 31% compared to last year at this time and the slowest start for European investment grade corporate debt since 2008. Financial issuers, which account for 64% of investment grade debt in Europe this year, have registered a 36% decline compared to a year ago. Corporates in France, Germany and Spain account for 57% of this year's activity, compared to 38% last year.
Societe Generale narrowly leads the ranking of European investment grade underwriters with 7% market share. BNP Paribas ranks second also with 7% of the market. Barclays, which held the top spot last year at this time, has fallen to fourth place with a decline of 1.8 market share points.
Best Start for Global ABS since 2007
Bolstered by a resurgent market for collateralized debt obligations (CDO), the volume of global asset-backed securities totals $67.3 billion for year-to-date 2013, a 28% increase compared to last year at this time and the best annual start for global ABS since 2007 ($256 billion). CDOs and CLOs account for 22% of ABS issuance so far this year, compared to 6% during year-to-date 2012. Securitizations of auto receivables account for 30% of year-to-date volume, followed by credit card receivables (10%).
Barclays holds the top spot for global ABS underwriting for year-to-date 2013 with 10.8% of the market. The firm held the top spot during year-to-date 2012 with 13.6% of the market. Citi and Bank of America Merrill Lynch follow closely behind with 10.8% and 10.4% market share, respectively.
Average US Share Buyback Tops $1 billion
This week's multi-billion share buyback programs from Qualcomm Inc ($5 billion) and Hess Corp ($4 billion), pushed the volume of announced US share buyback programs to $111.6 billion, a 96% increase compared to year-to-date 2012 and the strongest annual start for US share buybacks since 2007 ($114.4 billion). The average share repurchase program in the United States totals $1.1 billion for year-to-date 2012, up 35% from the average during year-to-date 2007, which totaled $841 million.
Home Depot, PepsiCo, UPS and GE lead the list of US companies authorizing share buyback programs so far this year. Retail, consumer products and industrials account for 46% of year-to-date activity. Just media and high technology buybacks have registered year-over-year percentage declines.