The writedown threat to banking jobs and bonuses

Posted by Ed 2 days ago
For the last several months, investment bankers have been keeping their spirits up by telling themselves that the deals are going to come back, they have to come back, because the private equity funds and leveraged buyout sponsors still have large funds to put to work. But the latest news from the Citrix take-private deal isn’t encouraging.
Citrix was one of the last big leveraged buyout transactions to be struck before the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the end of the 2021 deals boom. It’s been working its way through the pipeline ever since. This week, the debt capital markets (DCM) part of the transaction has come to market and the news is not good – there are roughly $500m of underwriting losses on the $4bn of high yield bonds that were sold, to be shared out between a syndicate that includes Goldman, Credit Suisse and Bank of America.
The headline figure, if anything, understates how badly this deal went. The yield that had to be offered was significantly higher than the top of the range that had been estimated only a couple of weeks ago, and the order book was barely covered. Rather than being in the position of deciding which clients to allocate the limited supply of bonds to, the underwriters were apparently reduced to calling round smaller hedge funds that didn’t even usually invest in the high-yield space, just to get the sale to happen at all. And as much as $1bn of the bonds ended up with Elliott Investment Management, the original sponsors of the deal. 

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