undefinedEuropean ABS market likely to remain in ‘price discovery’

European ABS market likely to remain in ‘price discovery’

Dynamic Credit European ABS Market Update - 25th of March 2020

Tim Jansen v2Tim Jansen25 March 2020 at 16:00

Spread Widening, Execution Deteriorating, Price Declines Across All Assets

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Every segment of financial markets is currently facing enormous challenges. Fixed income markets are seeing record outflows, which put a tremendous amount of stress on prices as sellers look to raise cash as quickly as possible. This is resulting in an unprecedented materialization of price declines across almost all assets. The combination of volatility, massive flows and trading desks undergoing business continuity practices have also led to a significant widening of bid/ask spreads as sellers significantly outnumber buyers.

European ABS BWIC volume spiked to nearly EUR 3 billion since March 9th, which is double the average monthly volume over the period from 2016 to 2019. Execution has notably deteriorated with an estimated traded ratio of 58%, compared to 80% over the last few years. Considering the circumstances, such a level is relatively high. This can, at least partly, be explained by the fact that banks are in a much stronger capital position this time and were generally pretty light from a balance sheet perspective. Therefore markets are seeing more orderly trading, allowing for better price discovery, as opposed to little to no trading flows for extended periods in 2008/2009. Central banks worldwide have acted swiftly to roll out liquidity programs and it appears many fiscal measures are following. However, spread widening has been most dramatic in CLOs with AAA and BBB bonds seeing somewhat similar absolute levels of spread widening of ~200-400 bps (with low transparency for CLO equity and non-investment grade tranches).

Though spreads across European ABS sectors are also at their widest levels in many years, announced increased asset purchases by the ECB via the Pandemic Emergency Purchase Program (PEPP) and Asset Purchase Program (APP) have already provided support for spreads on eligible ABS which has seen widening as little as 15-20 bps. However, the market is likely to remain in ‘price discovery’ mode for some time as COVID-19 headlines and resulting risks to the consumer driven economy continue to drive volatility over the near-term. Some select investors are stepping in cautiously in smaller sizes at the current levels, but spreads may widen even further from here.

Disclaimer Dynamic Credit Partners Europe B.V. (‘Dynamic Credit’) is a registered investment company (beleggingsonderneming) and a registered financial service provider (financieel dienstverlener) with the Dutch Authority for the Financial Markets (Autoriteit Financiële Markten). This document is intended for informational purposes only and is subject to change without any notice. The information provided is purely of an indicative nature and is not intended as an offer, investment advice, solicitation or recommendation for the purchase or sale of any security, financial instrument or financial product. This communication is a summary only, it may not contain all material terms. Any offering that may be related to the subject matter of this communication will be made to you pursuant to separate and distinct documentation (Legal Documentation) and in such case the information contained herein will be superseded in its entirety by any such Legal Documentation in its final form. Dynamic Credit may in the future issue, other communications that are inconsistent with, and reach different conclusions from, the information presented herein. Dynamic Credit cannot be held liable for the content of this document or any decision made by a third party on the basis of this document. Potential investors are advised to consult their independent investment and tax adviser before making an investment decision. An investment involves risks. The value of securities may fluctuate. Past returns are no guarantee for future returns.

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Tim Jansen v2
Tim Jansen

Tim Jansen is a member of the Portfolio Management team for the Diversified Loan Fund. He joined Dynamic Credit in 2017. He has been investing in a broad spectrum of cash and synthetic credit products in Europe for over 10 years in the role of Portfolio Manager at several leading asset managers, among which NNIP, MN and Robeco. Tim began his career at Aegon Asset Management and holds a master's degree in Econometrics from Erasmus University Rotterdam.