After a week spent sunning at IMN's annual ABS East fete in Boca Raton, Fla., ABS market participants returned to the office to bear the fruit of four days of wining and dining. U.S. ABS primary issuance surged to price close to $12 billion as of Thursday's close evening, with roughly $3 billion still making the rounds for late in the week.
Real estate ABS accounted for over $5.1 billion of total issuance. Countrywide Securities and RBS Greenwich Capital rekindled the relationship first reported earlier this year to share the lead on two Countrywide HELOC offerings. The first was a $1.01 billion series 2004-N transaction, with the 2.45-year triple-A rated notes pricing with guidance at 30 basis points over one-month Libor. The firms' second joint transaction for the week - another HELOC - was a $1.28 billion 2004-O offering, with a 2.7-year senior class was also on target at 30 basis points over Libor.
Long Beach Mortgage tapped the market for $1.1 billion in bonds backed by traditional home equity via Lehman Brothers and Long Beach sister unit WaMu Capital. The deal arrived sans a rating from Moody's Investors Service and down in credit, Fitch Ratings was also dropped off. The 4.51-year AA+' notes - with a sole rating from Standard and Poor's - came in wide at 85 basis points over one-month Libor versus guidance in the 80 basis point area over Libor. The 4.25-year A-' notes priced with expectations at 220 points over Libor. Meanwhile the BBB+' B class notes, with a 3.15-year maturity, gapped out to 485 basis points over one-month Libor relative to talk in the 465 basis point area over Libor. The 3.15-year triple-B subordinates were on target at 700 points over one-month Libor.
Lehman was also in the market with an $827 million offering from Aegis Mortgage Corp. with joint lead Bear Stearns.
GMAC-Residential Funding Corp. came with a $976 million RASC home equity offering via Banc of America Securities and Bear Stearns. The deal priced largely in line with expectations, although the 3.09-year triple-A rated notes came in just inside at 32 basis points over one-month Libor relative to talk in the 33 basis point area over Libor. Longer dated triple-A rated notes came in on target at 52 points over one-month Libor. Down in credit, the 4.26-year triple-B plus notes cheapened to 185 points over one-month Libor versus guidance at 175 points over Libor.
In the credit card sector, MBNA America Bank was in the market with a $500 million credit card offering via Barclays Capital and Deutsche Bank Securities. The triple-A rated single tranche de-linked offering priced tight at eight basis points over one-month Libor versus guidance in the nine basis point area over Libor.
Autos had a full week, pricing just shy of $4.5 billion, as American Honda Finance Corp. hit with a $976 million transaction backed by prime retail loans via Banc of America and Citigroup Global Markets. The 1.05-year triple-A rated noted were on target at three basis points over EDSF, while the 3.37-year senior notes came in tight to price at four points over swaps after being talked in the five basis point area over swaps.
WFS Financial tapped the market for $1.36 billion in non-prime retail loan ABS via Banc of America and Morgan Stanley. The triple-A rated notes with a 2.15-year average life came one point inside to land at eight basis points over swaps versus guidance in the nine area over.
Nissan Motor Credit came with $1.47 billion retail lease deal led by JPMorgan Securities and Merrill Lynch. The 1.75-year fixed notes came in on the tight side of guidance at five basis points over EDSF relative to expectations in the five to six basis point area. Meanwhile, the 2.54-year floaters priced tight at seven points over one-month Libor versus indicative levels in the eight basis point area over Libor. The triple-A fixed-rate notes with the same maturity were also slightly inside at 13 points over swaps versus guidance in the 14 basis point area over swaps.
The student loan sector also had a solid week, with deals from both Access Group Inc. and First Marblehead pricing on Thursday. Still circulating at week's end was a $710 million FFELP offering from Brazos Higher Education Service Corp via Banc of America.
Keeping pace with primary activity, the secondary market was active for the week, according to research from Credit Suisse First Boston. On Thursday, Nissan and Volkswagen auto, Chase and GMAC-RFC home equity, Crusade Australian RMBS, Providian credit card, and Nelnet student loan paper traded, CSFB reported.
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