Blackstone has hired Dean Criares from asset manager Trimaran (formerly known as Caravelle) to help run the firm's CDO business, industry sources said.

Ifty Hyder is leaving Barclays Capital to join XL Capital Assurance, where he will be a chief underwriting officer in CLOs, market sources said. Hyder, a highly regarded asset-backed professional, has roots in the Standard & Poor's CDO group, and had a stint at MBIA as well. Hyder was hired Barclays from S&P in 2000.

ASR hears that a boutique broker-dealer located in Washington, D.C. is looking for an MBS strategist to concentrate on Agency ARM, CMO and Pass-Through trading strategy. For further information e-mail resume to the attention of Peter Arian, or register online at


Fidelity Investments announced recently that it is terminating its American Express corporate credit and travel services agreement. The decision comes after American Express hired away four of Fidelity's mutual fund managers.

It's rumored that franchise collateral from defunct Amresco Commercial Finance could be securitized or sold via a whole loan by Goldman Sachs. Further details were unavailable at press time.

Several major credit card companies announced that they are raising their monthly late fee penalty. The increase, which is expected to be the largest in industry history, is expected to jump 3% in March. According to the data we've gathered, Citigroup, Fleet, Discover, and MBNA have all raised fees, most going to a tiered structure.

The Consumer Credit Index reported that of all Americans who did not pay off their credit card balance in full last month, 47% made only the minimum payment, 37% paid off less than half, and 3% paid nothing at all.

According to Bank of America MBNA signed an agreement with Bass Pro Shops Inc, a leading supplier of premium outdoor products, to provide the retailer with a "Bass Pro Shops Outdoor Rewards" card that will provide reward incentives for cardholder purchases.

Rating Agencies

In its latest installment of research on cross-agency rating policies, Moody's Investors Service released a study on resecuritization CDOs which the agency believes supports its argument that "rating estimates" are the most effective approach for including non-Moody's rated structured finance securities in Moody's rated CDOs.

"The differences range from one to nine notches," commented Noel Kirnon, group managing director in CDOs. "That's quite a bit of variance. So we felt that we couldn't apply a simple notching rule to rating resecuritization CDOs."

Moody's includes 17 CDO tranches in its study that both provided a rating estimate for inclusion in a multisector CDO and was not originally rated by the agency.


Salomon Smith Barney has its approximate $520 million Trust-preferred (Trups)-backed CDO ready for a print early next week and is oversold on the debt tranches. The $320 million Aaa/AAA (M/F) 30-year tenor piece is seen at +100bp/6ML, in-line with the last transaction. The $150 million 30-year B class A3/A- (M/F) is talked at +105bp area/6ML, but may tighten on demand. Below the debt is $50 million in equity. Meanwhile, First Tennessee priced its Trups deal last Wednesday, although no terms are available to-date.

Calendar 2002

March 25 - 26: New York, NY - The Strategic Research Institute will host the Commercial Finance & Asset Based Lending Conference. For more information visit

March 24-25: Las Vegas, NV - Banc of America Securities will host the Fourth Annual ABS and MBS Investor/Issuer Forum. For more information contact Covell Day at (704) 388-7835 or

April 7-10: Orlando, FL Standard and Poor's will host the 17th annual Structured Finance Seminar. For more information call 212-438-2800 or visit Events/Articles/pdf/PostcardforEBLAST.pdf

April 15-16: Prague, Czech Republic The Bond Market Association, The American Bar Association and Standard & Poor's will host Sub-Sovereign Finance in the New Europe Conference. For more information, call 212-440-9429 or email

April 22 23: Washington, DC - The Strategic Research Institute will host the Third Annual Student Loan Securitization Symposium. For more information visit

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