The fourth quarter of 2006 had the same theme that dominated the whole year of 2006 in terms of asset class distribution.
As expected, the real estate sector dominated once again despite the negative headlines that plagued subprime issuers in 4Q06. The quarter was marked by headlines such as Ownit Mortgage Corp. suddenly shutting down its doors and rumors of the possible sale of one, or several, of Orange, Calif.-based ACC Capital Corp.Õs subprime lending units. But, despite all the tumult in this branch of the ABS industry, the real estate asset class still increased to $130.08 billion from the previous quarterÕs showing of $112.69 billion.
Driving volume are the usual issuers like Countrywide Home Loan Inc. and GMAC-RFC as well as activity from dealership vehicles like Deutsche BankÕs ACE Securities Corp. and Goldman SachÕs GSAMP Trust and GSAA Home Equity Trust.
The second most prolific asset class this quarter is the auto with $24.81 billion, although coming down from the third quarterÕs showing of $26.09 billion. Jumbo transactions in this sector from DaimlerChrysler N.A. Holdings and Capital One Financial Corp. boosted volume. Meanwhile, smaller issuers like United Auto Credit Corp. as well as Taganka Car Loan Finance also played a part in the sectorÕs almost maintaining its totals from the previous quarter.
Student loan ABS is the third biggest sector for the fourth quarter, and rose a little bit from its showing the previous quarter. In 4Q06, student loans issuance amounted to $15.02 billion as compared to issuance in third quarter amounting to $14.78. It never recovered the ground it gained in the second quarter of 2006 where issuance in the sector totaled $21.79 billion. The usual suspects Sallie Mae, First Marblehead Corp. and Nelnet Inc. came to market with transactions that drove sector volumes over the quarter.
Credit card ABS volume dipped in 4Q06 to $11.17 billion compared to the previous quarterÕs showing of $17.43 billion. A lot of the activity in this sector happened in December, specifically the week ending Dec 15, when several card deals came to market including a $1 billion transaction from the Bank of America Credit Card Trust. (ASR, 12/18/06). There were mid-sized transactions as well from issuers like CabelaÕs Inc. and, of course, some deals from Advanta Business Card Master Trust. Ñ
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