Bondholder Losses In Leveraged Buyouts
Announcements of successful leveraged buyouts (LBOs) during January 1985 to April 1989 caused a significantly negative return on outstanding publicly traded nonconvertible bonds. Yet the average risk-adjusted debt holder losses are less than 7 percent of the average risk-adjusted equity holder gains. Bond losses are related to the pre-LBO rating, but only weakly to equity holder gains. We demonstrate that trader-quoted data from a major investment bank offers conclusions about the effects of LBOs on debt holders different from those drawn from commonly used matrix and exchange-based data (such as Standard & Poor's Bond Guide data). This has important implications for event studies involving debt instruments. Article published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Financial Studies in its journal, The Review of Financial Studies.
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