The CMBS world has been lulled during a rather quiet week, with spreads holding within expected ranges. The new-issue calendar is holding two issues for pricing in coming weeks, and outside of that it looks like March might be the next meaningful supply month. Currently an $826 million large loan floater from Banc of America and a Bear Stearns $400 million multifamily issue are the two deals making the rounds. Looking out a month, Banc of America's Michael Youngblood sees as many as nine conduits that are being talked up, but expects that to be "whittled down" over the next few weeks.
Bid lists have been scarce as well this week, following the over $700 million in triple-A lists that came the week before. That week also saw a $45 million mezz and a $35 million double-B list.
According to Lehman Brothers, January total returns for investment grade CMBS was +114 basis points. The sector beat treasuries by +57 basis points and corporates by 34 basis points. This, in a month that saw $4.5 billion in bid lists that trimmed the sector's gains late in the month. Otherwise, says the firm, "performance could have been even more spectacular." The monthly performance gains were 38 basis points better than the average monthly gain in 2001, and on a post-9/11 adjusted basis, the gains were still +18 basis points. For the month, spreads in triple-A 5s and long-maturity triple-Bs tightened 11 basis points as measured by the Lehman Index.