Wednesday, 12 December 2018
The complex regulatory landscape transforming investment banking is a burden for any firm. Navigating it while dealing with reputational issues and serial investigations – and remaining focused on clients at the same time – is more difficult still. For doing all this successfully, and sticking it out to win substantial gains in market share despite tough economic headwinds, Goldman Sachs is IFR’s Bank of the Year.
Raising more than €18bn of unsecured and asset-backed bonds over 12 tumultuous months is an exceptional feat in itself. Scoring solid subscription rates, boasting exceptional secondary performance, spearheading new structures and targeting a whole array of investor groups while doing so, makes Volkswagen IFR’s Issuer and Corporate Issuer of the Year.
It was yet another blockbuster year for US dollar bond issuance as companies rushed to refinance debt, return capital and optimise capital structures. In this turbo-charged environment, Goldman Sachs led most of the year’s largest underwritings and snatched market share from its rivals, making it IFR’s US Dollar Bond House of the Year.
Deutsche Bank made the call after the crisis to focus its fixed-income business on flow, branding itself a “flow monster” and setting its sights on the top of the volume table. But it has focused its structured finance division firmly off-the-run, mixing principal finance with ABS to powerful effect, making it IFR’s EMEA Structured Finance House of the Year. Ever more products seem to fall into the structured finance bucket at Deutsche Bank, but this means the bank keeps its seat at the top table in every sub-market of a diverse business line. Deutsche has not always had a reputation for being a seamless organisation – what is now called structured finance, in particular, touches on a huge range of businesses. In the past two years, however, these have all been pulled together under group head Elad Shraga, with the creation of a new structured finance vertical focused on the profits ...
Deutsche Bank returned to form last year showcasing its versatility across products and geographies. The German firm was involved in the year’s biggest deals and, crucially, guided clients through the turbulent summer months. It wins IFR’s Emerging EMEA Bond House of the Year.
The first rates bear market for many years came as the sector was facing a barrage of new regulations, and made an already challenging backdrop even worse. For weathering the storm, and remaining committed to servicing its clients’ risk management needs, HSBC is IFR’s Interest Rate Derivatives House of the Year.
Whether it was for capital to back a mammoth acquisition, a refinancing for an old-time client, market knowledge of the buyside or financing advice, Bank of America Merrill Lynch could be relied on in 2013. For its creativity, lending firepower, market clout, depth of wallet and smart transactions, BofA Merrill is IFR’s Americas Loan House of the Year.
Think Google, Facebook, Zynga or Groupon. Ultra-hyped internet IPOs have found it very difficult to deliver a smooth path to public markets.
Goldman Sachs did not just lead more equity-linked issuance than any other bank – it drove issuance too. The use of its own capital helped ensure the bank was on top once again and is IFR’s Americas Structured Equity House of the Year.
What is there to say about 2013? Well the first thing banks should say (again) is “thanks very much”. Thanks, that is, to policy makers and central bankers around the world for pumping so much free money into the system.
The IFR Americas Awards seek to recognise outstanding capital markets achievement in the US, Canada and Latin America. These Awards will be presented at a special ceremony at the Thomson Reuters Building, Times Square, New York on February 12 2014.
Introduced for the first time in 2013, the IFR Middle East Awards recognise the new era of capital markets in the Middle East region – celebrating and honouring those companies that demonstrated excellence throughout the year. The Awards were presented at the inaugural IFR Middle East Awards ceremony in Dubai on March 31 2014.
The IFR Asia Awards honour achievement in Asia’s capital markets and are celebrated at the annual IFR Asia Awards Dinner.
This year’s ceremony will be held on February 19 2014 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Hong Kong. For full details, visit www.ifrasiaawards.com.
The hard copy of the 2013 IFR Review of the Year is sent to all IFR magazine subscribers, but non-subscribers can view a full digital version for free by clicking here.
If you would like to order the 2013 IFR Review of the Year in hard copy, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anatomy of a giant: Verizon’s US$49bn bond. This is a behind-the-scenes look at the trials and tribulations of creating the biggest bond deal ever. It was a transaction many years in the making, but when it came together, it did so very quickly indeed.
Some of the world’s biggest banks – including Deutsche Bank and Barclays – completely misjudged regulators’ determination to clamp down on leverage. Many were forced into panic overhauls, even though the shift had been well flagged for almost three years.
+-Fixed-income, currencies and commodities units have been the banking industry’s main cash cow for years. But that looks to be coming to an end, as business heads wrestle with new capital, leverage and derivatives trading rules.
The laborious implementation of the Dodd-Frank Act is in the home straight. Some confusion remains as the business of trading swaps on exchanges begins in earnest, but even some former critics accept the regulators have got most things right so far.
ECM block trades virtually vanished during the financial crisis. Now they are big business again as banks vie for jumbo deals and assume massive risks. The year is littered with failed transactions, yet banks can’t help but come back for more.
Most experts agree that banks – even the largest ones – are considerably safer now than when the financial crisis kicked in. But what happens if trouble comes calling again? Would national and international overseers let them fail?
While US banks raced to clean up their mess after the financial crisis kicked in, European banks – and their regulators – have taken their sweet time. The result? The Americans are now poised to steal a march – and plenty of market share – from their rivals across the Atlantic.
Japan’s unprecedented monetary experiment has won it cautious approval from the rest of Asia, but will the so-called third arrow of greater structural reform actually arrive? Much is riding on the country’s ability to deliver on its promises.
Japan’s three mega-commercial banks and the country’s leading investment banks are on a roll. Results for the second quarter of the 2013–14 fiscal year, unveiled in mid-November, were spectacular and easily outperformed those of peers in the US and Europe. Outlook for the full fiscal year is bullish, as the banks set about targeted growth at home and internationally.
Syndicating bond deals has always been more art than science. But it is even more a leap into the unknown these days, thanks to tighter rules on communication with investors and the growing illiquidity of secondary bond markets.
An old bond market dog, as Anthony Peters describes himself, takes a look at the state of the secondary markets – and despairs. 2013 could have been the year when a new world in the markets began to emerge. If so, it won’t be one to his liking.