In response to increasing year-end demand, home-equity product will continue hitting the asset-backed trading block in weeks to come, and is on the rise, according to sources in the industry.

Notable deals in the queue include a Green Tree Financial Corp. HEL deal and a Household International high-loan-to-value transaction. Both follow a scramble last week for GMAC-RFC paper - described by a source as "people tripping over each other, fighting and clawing to get into the new RFC deal. An ugly food fight, reflecting the fear of being under-invested in spread product over year-end."

Household's transaction, said to be worth $500 million, will be a first-time issue from this particular trust, a trader said. A unique feature on this deal will be a "higher" high-LTV, bumped up to 93%, the trader said. Household's deal is talked to price 5 basis points behind the RFC deal, overall. Merrill Lynch & Co. will manage the transaction.

Green Tree's home equity deal, of undisclosed size, should be the last in a string of three deals, the source said. The second deal, a manufactured housing transaction, was expected to close at press time last week.

"We don't usually comment on specific deals we're working on," said a source at Conseco Inc., parent company to Green Tree. "We only say that we have some deals."

Though home-equity deals continue to fill the pipeline, HEL transactions still fall behind the 1998 year-to-date figures, according to published reports.

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