Hitting it for six:Best-in-class return on equity, best share price performance of its peers, record revenues across a now balanced institution – and a deal roster to be proud of. Given the tragic circumstances of 2020, a victory lap for those who have been along for the journey might be unseemly. But a quiet moment of satisfaction is surely in order. Morgan Stanley is IFR’s Bank of the Year.
Riding to the rescue: Covid-19 was the single greatest contributing factor to record-breaking SSAR supply in 2020, causing significant revisions to the funding plans of many issuers, none more so than the European Union. The outbreak of the pandemic and subsequent response saw the supranational leap from second-tier issuer to bond market colossus, smashing demand records along the way. The EU is IFR’s SSAR Issuer of the Year.
Ready for take-off: In a year of record US bond volumes that favoured banks with the sharpest focus on serving corporate clients, one stood out for the intellectual capital it brought to the table and the innovative ways it helped companies navigate the market. Goldman Sachs is IFR’s US Bond House and North America High-Yield Bond House of the Year.
Crisis guide:In a year when a once-in-a-century pandemic disrupted everything, one bank stood out when it came to bringing together technical and structuring expertise, a willingness to take risk and sheer determination. After winning market share with some of the year’s premier debuts and funding established borrowers whose businesses were rocked by the health crisis, Barclays is IFR North America Structured Finance House of the Year.
First port of call:Issuers from the Middle East had to be nimble and open-minded when it came to funding options during a turbulent 2020. For its role in helping borrowers of all stripes find the solutions they needed to navigate the markets, Standard Chartered is IFR’s Middle East Bond House of the Year.
The right balance:Equity derivatives businesses either flourished or foundered in 2020: flow trading volumes ballooned even as many exotics desks struggled. For continuing to grow a balanced and diversified business in this challenging environment, Credit Suisse is IFR’s Equity Derivatives House of the Year.
A shining light:As the capital markets adjusted to the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic, Credit Suisse showed why it is one of the US loan market’s most nimble financiers. For its array of market-moving transactions that proved to be an ideal bellwether for lenders and borrowers, Credit Suisse is IFR’s Americas Loan House of the Year.
Safe pair of hands: For providing a record number of second-party opinions as the pandemic boosted appetite for sustainable debt to new highs and for supporting the explosion of social issuance while continuing to launch innovative new services, Sustainalytics is IFR’s ESG Opinion Provider of the Year.
Capturing the themes:In a bumper year for Asia ECM, one bank stood out for its ability to capture key market themes and move quickly to raise funds for its clients. For leading the deals that defined the year, Morgan Stanley is IFR’s Asia-Pacific Equity House of the Year.
The lifeguard:When the rubber hit the road, Goldman Sachs found a structure to meet clients’ needs. Public, private, structured, multi-tranche or rescue, the US bank was leading for both Covid-19 losers and winners. Goldman Sachs is IFR’s Americas Structured Equity House of the Year.