Korea is set to enjoy a strong finish to 2005. After Samsung Card recently secured Korea's first case of triple-A ratings for an unwrapped transaction with a $300 million credit card issue via Standard Chartered, local rival LG Card completed a $400 million deal via Merrill Lynch.

Although Moody's Investor Service rated LG's issue a couple of notches below Samsung at Aa3, the bonds, which have a 4.3-year average life, enjoyed competitive pricing of 28 basis points over Libor. Aside from arranging the deal, Merrill is thought to be the sole investor, a role it has assumed on other Korean ABS transactions in the past year.

Another deal scheduled to close this year is Hyundai Capital's 330 million auto loans offering, arranged by ING.

(c) 2005 Asset Securitization Report and SourceMedia, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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