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Argentina Speeds Up $10 Billion Bond Sale

Argentina Speeds Up $10 Billion Bond Sale

02/01/18 - 19:07 - Government seeks to sell bonds early to ensure investor demand. Sale will precede bond offering denominated in Asian currency.

Argentina is rushing to pull off a $10 billion bond sale this month as Latin America’s third-largest economy seeks to get ahead of other regional offerings.

Argentine government officials are working to appoint banks for a sale in the first half of January, according to people with knowledge of the matter. Speculation about other offerings is hastening Argentina’s effort to get its sale done amid concerns those could soak up international demand, said the people.

Argentina’s proposal envisages selling at least $7.5 billion of bonds or as much as $10 billion if the market permits. The bonds will be sold in tranches and will include 10-year and 30-year notes. Argentina will use institutions including foreign banks for its planned sale, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing a private matter.

The offering would be presided over by Finance Minister Luis Caputo, a former Deutsche Bank AG banker who handled the nation’s return to the international market, with about $22 billion of sovereign issuance in 2016, according to S&P Global Ratings.

The proposed sale would also account for about a third of the $30 billion of financing the nation needs this year, based on comments from government officials late in December. About 40 percent of the financing will be issued in foreign currencies, according to the same officials.

The province of Buenos Aires, Argentina’s largest state, will follow the sovereign by offering as much as $3 billion to international investors, a separate person said, also asking not to be identified discussing a private plan.

After tapping the dollar market, both Argentina and Buenos Aires will seek to sell securities in other currencies, according to two of the people. Both issuers may try another sale denominated in an Asian currency, as soon as March, those people said.

— With assistance by Justin Villamil, and Amy Stillman

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