Asia IG: a defensive asset class

Asia’s debt market pipeline has come to a standstill thanks to recent market volatility, but the investment-grade sector is still likely to provide some upside.

An accumulation of adverse news last week sent jitters across Asian debt capital markets, shutting off the pipeline of new issues, at least temporarily, but is unlikely to hold down the region’s investment-grade sector for long.

Credit spreads in Asia widened after the Swiss National Bank wrong footed markets and sent the Swiss franc soaring, oil prices continued to fall, Chinese property concerns nagged in the wake of Kaisa's loan default, and US Treasury yields tightened as investors rushed to safe-haven assets.

There was no dollar-, euro- or yen-denominated bond-raising activity at all from Asian issuers on Friday and Monday, which is unusual for January a...

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