The U.S. ABS market returned to the office for last week's holiday-shortened session to see just $5 billion of new-issue supply hit. After what was a fairly slow end of August, the primary market is expected to pick up significantly throughout September. Without trying to sound redundant, home equity supply made up the bulk of last week's issuance, something exacerbated by the void of alternate supply.
Outside of mortgage-related activity, just one deal each made the rounds in the auto loan and credit card sectors, from AmeriCredit Corp. and Bank One N.A. Meanwhile in mortgage ABS AmeriQuest Mortgage, Centex Corp., and NovaStar Financial combined to price $2.74 billion of home equity paper. Saxon Asset Securities was expected to price a $980 million offering late in the week.
AmeriCredit's third auto deal of the year was a success, pricing after just one session of marketing. Led by Deutsche Bank Securities, proceeds were earmarked to pay down the warehousing facility set up by Deutsche Bank earlier this year.
Returning to its FSA roots, the issuer offered FSA wrapped paper for the first time since last September. AMCAR 2003-C-F got a positive reception from the market, pricing within price guidance across the board, and inside of talk out on the curve. While one-year A2 notes priced to yield 22 basis points over EDSF, two- and three-year A3 and A4 paper priced at 44 and 50 basis points over swaps, respectively.
Bank One announced late last week a $400 million floating-rate senior tranche from its Bank One Issuance Trust, the eighth such senior offering this year. BOIT 2003-A9, with a 10-year average life, was talked in the 25 basis point area over one-month Libor and was on track for a Friday pricing.
The largest offering last week came from the Argent Securities, wholesale lending division of AmeriQuest Mortgage, which priced $1.5 billion of series 2003-W3 notes through Citigroup Capital Markets and UBS Warburg. After having tapped the market twice before, Argent saw spreads price inside of previous transactions. For example, the 2003-W3 2.6-year AV1B class priced at 45 basis points over one-month Libor. When the first Argent offering priced in early July, the similarly tenured class priced at 50 basis points over.
Homebuilder Centex priced its third securitization of the year, via Citigroup as lead manager. Two-year senior fixed-rate spreads for Centex AF2 notes priced to yield 53 basis points over swaps, with three seniors coming in at 55 basis points over swaps.
NovaStar sold $390 million of all floating-rate 2003-C notes through joint leads RBS Greenwich Capital and Wachovia Securities. Two-year A2B triple-A floaters priced at 33 basis points over one-month Libor, within price guidance. Down in credit, triple-B B2 notes, with a 5.4-year average life, priced at 415 basis points over one-month Libor, also within indicative levels.
Saxon, marketing $980 million of 2003-3 notes, also led by RBS Greenwich, had yet to price as of press time, but was expected to do so Friday. Offered spreads were in-line with Centex, with two-year fixed-rate AF2 notes offered at 50 to 53 basis points over swaps and three-year AF3 paper offered at 52 to 55 basis points over swaps.
RBS Greenwich Capital enjoyed an active week of underwriting in the home equity sector, with a part in three of the four offerings - two as lead manager and one (Centex) as a co-manager.
Seen pricing this week is a $2.1 billion U.K. MBS offering from Northern Rock's Granite Mortgage trust, via JPMorgan Securities. Also, Barclays plc's Gracechurch Funding is seen with a $1 billion offering via Barclays Capital.