Abu Dhabi's FGB delays bond issue as markets volatile

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The sale stands postponed because of

The sale stands postponed because of "volatile markets" (ITP Images)

Abu Dhabi lender First Gulf Bank (FGB) decided to hold off issuing a benchmark $500 million bond due to volatile market conditions, lead arrangers said on Wednesday.

"The sale stands postponed because of volatile markets," one banker from a lead arranging bank told Reuters. Another lead arranger confirmed the decision.

A flurry of issues from the Gulf Arab region in recent weeks has been met with strong investor appetite, but of the three regional banks to price this week, two printed on Tuesday, raising $2.1 billion, pointing to investor fatigue setting in.

Saudi British Bank and Qatar National Bank both launched deals on Tuesday.

Overall, including Abu Dhabi's International Petroleum Investment Co (IPIC's) $2.5 billion issue, total Gulf issuance since Tuesday stood at $4.6 billion ahead of FGB's launch.

A banker said: "They (FGB) decided not to go with the issue as some of their conditions were not met."

He said: "In just the last two days, about $5 billion worth of bonds were lapped up - IPIC, a Qatari bank and Saudi British Bank sold bonds. This was too close."

HSBC, Citi, BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank and National Bank of Abu Dhabi were hired to manage the sale. (Reuters)

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