Please Note: Blog posts are not selected, edited or screened by Seeking Alpha editors.

Syndicated Loan Market Commentary 08/20/2010

Economic concerns continue to be the central focus of the market and equities trended lower globally. Comments out of the ECB made investors nervous after Axel Weber said that the ECB should not withdraw stimulus money before year end. The S&P and the Dow both closed lower in light volume; the S&P 500 finished at 1,071.69 (-0.37%) and the Dow at 10,213.62 (-0.56%).
In the loan market it was a typical summer Friday and trading was very limited in the morning and seemingly dead in the afternoon. Most of the trading was event driven; Ford, GGP, Oriental Trading, and Tribune were all active today. Overall, the market was a touch heavy at the open but things were largely unchanged. Flow names were mixed with names advancing and declining around an eighth. Next week will be a lot of the same and economic indicators will again dictate the direction of the market. Have a good weekend.
  • Las Vegas Sands' extended TLB is quoted 90.5-91.25 this morning after lenders received a $1 billion paydown to the facility yesterday, sources said. The loan was quoted 93.5-93.875 yesterday before the paydown. Lenders agreed to extend $1.415 billion of the TLB by 2.5 years to November 2016 in exchange for an increase in spread to LIB+275. In addition, lenders agreed to extend $284.5 million in delayed draw I term loans to 2016 and $207.9 million in delayed draw II term loans to 2015. Approximately $980 million in term loans were not extended. That portion will continue to pay LIB+175 and will mature in 2013 and 2014, consistent with the original terms of the loans. The non-extended loan is quoted 89.25-91.25 today.
  • Reynolds Group Holdings has received a $5 billion debt financing package consisting of loans and bonds to back its $6 billion acquisition of Pactiv Corp. The split between loans and bonds is yet to be determined. The acquisition is expected to close before year-end but the company is considering alternatives in light of current market conditions and may launch the financing well in advance of the close of the deal.
  • Ford Motor Co's debt reduction efforts are ahead of schedule, said executive chairman Bill Ford, speaking to reporters in Detroit this morning.
  • Neff Rental Inc announced late yesterday that it had selected an affiliate of Wayzata Investment Partners as the successful bidder to sponsor Neff's plan of reorganization at a court-approved auction conducted as a part of Neff's prearranged reorganization proceedings.
  • Thursday a U.S. bankruptcy court approved General Growth Properties Inc's disclosure statement. A confirmation hearing for GGP's plan of re-organization has been set for October 21.
  • Neff Rental Inc today said an affiliate of Wayzata Investment Partners has been selected as the successful bidder to sponsor the privately owned equipment rental company's plan of reorganization. The court-approved auction was conducted as a part of Neff's prearranged reorganization proceedings. As a result of the auction, cash recoveries available to Neff's second-lien lenders have increased from $10 million to $73 million. In addition, first-lien term loan lenders may elect to receive payment in full in cash or participate in a rights offering for up to $181.6 million. The rights offering is fully backstopped by Wayzata. With these developments, Neff remains on track to complete its financial restructuring, eliminate more than $400 million in debt, and emerge from Chapter 11 in the near term. The deadline to vote on Neff's revised Chapter 11 plan, which incorporates terms of Wayzata's bid, is Sept. 1. A confirmation hearing is scheduled to occur on Sept. 14. Also, a bid submitted by a group composed of an affiliate of Odyssey Investment Partners and certain of Neff's second lien lenders was designated the "backup" bid submitted at the auction, Neff said.
  • Junior lenders of American Safety Razor Co want to propose their own restructuring cure for the bankrupt company in place of the current plan, which they compared to "haphazardly hacking off a limb." BlackRock Kelso Capital Corp and GSO/Blackstone Debt Funds Management LLC, who together hold about $49.2 million of American Safety Razor's second-lien debt, asked a bankruptcy court to allow an alternative plan. American Safety Razor's current restructuring proposal involves selling off the company to its first-lien lenders, led by UBS AG, for an undisclosed amount. In court papers filed on Thursday, the second-lien lenders, represented by Robert Stark of Brown Rudnick, said the company collapsed because of "a weak senior management team that has not been sufficiently attentive to the needs of retail customers." Privately held American Safety Razor, which filed for bankruptcy in July, was hit hard after losing a contract with Wal-Mart Stores Inc in 2009.
  • Tribune Co's plan to end its 20-month bankruptcy appeared to unravel on Friday with threats that the parties must accept a new plan or face legal fights, while creditors warned they might try to seize control of the reorganization. The owner the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and more than 20 television stations told a court that talks about how to repay creditors, which continued past the hearing's scheduled start, had failed.
  • Olam Holdings Partnership has increased its $300 million, three-year bullet term loan to $350 million after oversubscription. The six mandated lead arrangers and bookrunners hold $44.67 million each: ABN AMRO Bank, Credit Suisse Singapore, HSBC USA, JP Morgan, Standard Chartered Bank and Natixis NY. the facility is guaranteed by Singapore parent Olam International. Pricing is LIB+275 with a 125bp commitment fee. Banks were invited to join at an upfront fee of 62.5bp for commitments of $25 million or more, or 50bp for less than $25 million. Financial covenants on the parent firm include a minimum consolidated shareholders equity of S$900 million, a maximum consolidated net debt to consolidated shareholders equity of 4.5 times, and a minimum interest coverage ratio of 1.5 times.
  • Standard & Poor's' Rating Services yesterday raised its CCR rating on Tyson Foods Inc, to 'BB+' from 'BB'. The outlook is positive. S&P also raised the issue-level rating on Tyson' senior unsecured notes to 'BB+' from 'BB'. Tyson had about $2.6 billion in reported debt outstanding as of July 3, 2010.
High Yield
  • The Goodyear Tire Co USD100m add-on to its SEC registered 8.25% sr notes due 08/15/20. B1/B+. NC5 (08/15/20) (MWC T+50bp), then at 104.125, 102.75, 101.375, 100.00. Equity claw: 3y (08/15/13) 35% at 108.25. B1/B+. Via DB. CUSIP: 382550BB6. Fully fungible with the USD900m issuer which priced 08/10/10. Pricing later this mornig. UOP: along with cash on hand to redeem its USD260m 9% sr notes 07/01/15 at 104.50. Biz: Tire manufacturer. HQ: Akron, OH.
  • The Goodyear Tire Co (NYSE:GT) USD100m (face) add-on to its SEC registered 8.25% sr notes due 08/15/20. B1/B+. NC5 (08/15/15) (MWC T+50bp), then at 104.125, 102.75, 101.375, 100.00. Equity claw: 3y (08/15/13) 35% at 108.25. B1/B+. Via DB. Priced at 100.75. 8.119% YTM. Del 08/25 w/AI.
What to Watch on Monday
  • Treasury to auction $30 billion 13-week bills
  • Treasury to auction $30 billion 26-week bills
  • Treasury to auction $7 billion 29-year sixmonth TIPS
  • InterGen Q2 earnings, conference call 11 a.m. ET Tuesday Morning Corp. Q4 earnings before market open, conference call 1 p.m. ET
  • MedMedia Q2 earnings, conference call 2 p.m. ET
  • Brigham Exploration Co. at EnerCom oil & gas conference 4:20 p.m. ET
16th Annual Thomson Reuters LPC Loan Conference
Wednesday September 22, 2010
Marriott Marquis, New York City
Now in its 16th year, the Thomson Reuters LPC Loan Conference has become one of the industry's premiere annual events. Join investors, lenders, financial sponsors and treasurers as they discuss the outlook for a continually evolving loan market.
Click Here to view our detailed agenda and to access registration information.