Capital Markets

IBM Beats Bond Market Blues

On Thursday, Big Blue sold $4 billion worth of corporate bonds.
Stephen TaubOctober 10, 2008

International Business Machines Corp. did its part to try to reopen the bond market. While most companies are having trouble raising money, Big Blue sold $4 billion in a three-part debt sale on Thursday, according to Reuters, citing International Financing Review.

The computer giant sold $1.4 billion five-year notes, priced at 99.647 to yield 3.875 percentage points more than comparable U.S. Treasuries, according to the report. It also sold $1.6 billion in 10-year notes, priced at 99.628 to yield 3.875 percentage points more than Treasuries, and $1 billion in 30-year bonds, priced at 98.891 to yield 4 percentage points more than Treasuries.

Banc of America Securities, Barclays Capital, Credit Suisse and Deutsche bank Securities were the lead managers of the sale, according to the wire service. The Wall Street Journal reported that this was the first big deal from a highly rated corporate borrower in two weeks, and noted that spreads underscored IBM’s desire to entice investors into the deal — given that the company is rated A1 by Moody’s and A by Standard & Poor’s.

“The markets were open to us at this time, so we decided to enter,” IBM spokesman Doug Shelton told the Associated Press. He added that it was an opportunity to cover pending maturities as the company enters the fourth quarter and approaches the new year.