ICICI sets Indian bond benchmark

Tight pricing from a predictably strong order book.

Joint leads Deutsche Bank and Merrill Lynch priced a $300 million five-year fixed rate deal for ICICI Bank at New York's open yesterday Wednesday. As the first offshore Indian bond in just over six years, the deal met an enthusiastic response from investors, with books topping $1.5 billion and closing five times subscribed.

The huge rarity value of the Baa3BB rated deal enabled the leads to progressively tighten pricing to levels where it became competitive with the loan market. Having set out with price guidance around the 155bp area on Monday, the leads narrowed the level to 148bp on Wednesday and then priced through it.

Final terms saw pricing...

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