Sanpaolo IMI debuts in Singapore bond markets

Sanpaolo''s bond issue adds to the slew of foreign issuers that have been tapping the Singapore dollar bond markets and have raised S$1.75 billion up to the second quarter of 2002.

Sanpaolo IMI SpA, one of the top three banking groups in Italy, made its debut in Singapore's bond markets yesterday Thursday. Sanpaolo IMI announced the launch of a S$100 million five-year bond off its EMTN programme lead-managed and underwritten by Citibank.

The fixed rate bonds pay a coupon of 2.71%, which is much cheaper than the 4.4% coupon on the Eu100 million five-year fixed rate bonds that Sanpaolo issued earlier in the month. At that time Sanpaolo also raised Eu100 million each three- and seven-year fixed rate bonds paying a coupon of 3.85% and 4.7%.

The issue under the EMTN programme, which is rated AAa3, allows Sanpaolo to take advantage of arbitrage...

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