New issue volume totaled just $7.9 billion in last week's holiday- shortened trading week, but demand - particularly for auto loan ABS - remains strong. Spreads for the two retail auto loan deals to hit last week cleared in the low single-digit levels versus underlying benchmarks and could be playing limbo versus swaps and Libor before the first quarter is through.

Nissan Motor Co., first to tap the market last week, sold $1.3 billion of 2004-A notes via Citigroup Global Markets. One-year senior A2 notes priced at two basis points over EDSF, while two-year A3s priced at two over swaps, each one basis point through guidance. Three-year A4 paper, meanwhile, priced in line with guidance at four over swaps.

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