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Announcement:

Moody's: French corporate bond issuance to remain steady in the next 18 months; credit quality stable

 The document has been translated in other languages

31 Oct 2018

Paris, October 31, 2018 -- Favourable macro conditions and ongoing low interest rates will continue to underpin steady debt issuance by French non-financial companies over the next 12-18 months, particularly by large issuers, says Moody's Investors Service in a report published today.

Moody's report, "Non-financial Corporates -- France: Broadly stable bond, loan issuance supported by stable environment, steady credit quality," is available on www.moodys.com. Moody's subscribers can access this report via the link provided at the end of this press release. The rating agency's report is an update to the markets and does not constitute a rating action.

"French companies look set to issue around EUR70-EUR75 billion in bonds in 2018, roughly the same amount as last year, but 2019 issuances will likely soften after the ECB's bond purchase programme winds up at the end of the year," says Guillaume Leglise, Assistant Vice President -- Analyst at Moody's.

French companies' credit quality while slightly improving overall will remain broadly stable into 2019. Leverage has fallen slightly on continued earnings growth, and liquidity risks are limited thanks to well spread debt maturities and healthy cash balances. Debt maturities for lower rated issuers will start to build up around 2022-23.

In terms of debt type, high-grade loan volumes are robust with corporates taking advantage of attractive financing conditions. Bridge loans to finance acquisitions are growing as banks have more appetite to underwrite large transactions. Leveraged loan activity is strong reflecting accrued LBO refinancing and solid appetite from CLOs.

French high-yield bond issuance will soften in 2019 as markets become more volatile and investors become more selective. The end of ECB bond buying could also make it more difficult for lower rated issuers to access the markets.

Whilst speculative grade issuances by French companies is dominated by repeat issuers, their covenant protection will remain materially better than non-French European companies'.

Subscribers can access the report at: http://www.moodys.com/viewresearchdoc.aspx?docid=PBC_1140687 .

NOTE TO JOURNALISTS ONLY: For more information, please call one of our global press information hotlines: London +44-20-7772-5456, New York +1-212-553-0376, Tokyo +813-5408-4110, Hong Kong +852-3758-1350, Sydney +61-2-9270-8141, Mexico City 001-888-779-5833, São Paulo 0800-891-2518, or Buenos Aires 0800-666-3506. You can also email us at mediarelations@moodys.com or visit our web site at www.moodys.com.

This publication does not announce a credit rating action. For any credit ratings referenced in this publication, please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for the most updated credit rating action information and rating history.

Guillaume Leglise
AVP - Analyst
Corporate Finance Group
Moody's France SAS
96 Boulevard Haussmann
Paris 75008
France
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

Yasmina Serghini
Associate Managing Director
Corporate Finance Group
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

Releasing Office:
Moody's France SAS
96 Boulevard Haussmann
Paris 75008
France
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

No Related Data.
© 2019 Moody’s Corporation, Moody’s Investors Service, Inc., Moody’s Analytics, Inc. and/or their licensors and affiliates (collectively, “MOODY’S”). All rights reserved.

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