Moody's Investors Service
The 2020 iteration of the KangaNews-Moody’s Investors Service Corporate Borrower’s Intentions Survey highlights the response of corporate Australia and New Zealand to COVID-19. The results show treasury teams are anticipating a rocky path out of the crisis and a heightened domestic focus to their funding plans.
Australia’s buy-now, pay-later securitisation sector received a significant stamp of approval in July as Moody’s Investors Service upgraded the top tranches of all three of Zip Co’s outstanding transactions to Aaa. The rating agency had previously withheld the top mark based on the relative infancy of Zip and the BNPL asset class, and the issuer now says it hopes to see a cost-of-funds benefit from the development.
Australian corporate and nonbank borrowers have made the most of a playing field left open to them by the absence of major-bank senior bond issuance since early 2020. Whether the credit market remains as deep for these borrowers once banks return is one of the biggest questions heading into the second half of 2021.
If Australian corporate engagement with sustainable finance were measured by labelled green, social and sustainability bond issuance, progress remained underwhelming in 2020. However, issuers, investors and other market participants at the KangaNews Sustainable Debt Summit 2020 spoke of deepening commitments to environmental, social and governance risk mitigation.
Australia’s credit market has seen a pickup in supply of capital instruments, including a clutch of corporate hybrid transactions. The KangaNews Debt Capial Markets Summit 2020 webinar series included a session on additional capital, which focused on supply dynamics, demand drivers and the ever-present tension between retail, wholesale and true institutional participation.