Will Korean opera bonds sound flat note?

Events surrounding the award of a mandate for a $500 million to $1 billion exchangeable into Cho Hung Bank and Woori Financial Holdings have descended into the kind of farce that would have made Rossini proud.

Proposals for an exchangeable were originally due Wednesday after being sprung on bankers, who were only given 48 hours notice to put together a structure that many believed to be completely unworkable from the outset. After vociferous complaints, the government was said to have reluctantly agreed to extend the deadline on the final afternoon, only to inform the market that it had changed its mind 15 minutes later, before finally conceding defeat for a second time and allowing banks until today Friday to arrange their submissions.

At the heart of the issue lies a belief that the idea is a non-starter and that putting together any kind of proposal is complete a waste of time...

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