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Debt issue costs and issue characteristics in the Eurobond market

  • Arie Melnik


  • Doron Nissim


This paper analyzes the issue costs and initial pricing of bonds in the international market. In particular, we investigate the determinants of three components of issue costs: underwriter fee, underwriter spread (the difference between the offering price and the guaranteed price to the issuer), and underpricing (the difference between the market price and the offering price). Total underwriter compensation increases with the bonds’ credit risk and maturity, but it is insignificantly related to issue size. Interestingly, underwriters appear to price some issue characteristics directly (by adjusting the fee) and other characteristics indirectly (by setting the guaranteed price). The two compensation components (fee and spread) are negatively related to each other. We provide evidence that this trade-off is consistent with income tax considerations, as well as with two-tier pricing by underwriters. We find no evidence of underpricing.

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Paper provided by ICER - International Centre for Economic Research in its series ICER Working Papers with number 09-2003.

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Length: 27 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:icr:wpicer:09-2003
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  1. Sorensen, Eric H, 1979. "The Impact of Underwriting Method and Bidder Competition upon Corporate Bond Interest Cost," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 34(4), pages 863-70, September.
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  4. Miles Livingston & Robert E. Miller, 2000. "Investment Bank Reputation and the Underwriting of Nonconvertible Debt," Financial Management, Financial Management Association, vol. 29(2), Summer.
  5. Melnik, Arie L. & Plaut, Steven E., 1996. "Industrial structure in the Eurocredit underwriting market," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 623-636, August.
  6. Kroszner, Randall S. & Rajan, Raghuram G., 1997. "Organization structure and credibility: Evidence from commercial bank securities activities before the Glass-Steagall Act," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 475-516, August.
  7. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
  8. Allen, David S & Lamy, Robert E & Thompson, G Rodney, 1990. " The Shelf Registration of Debt and Self Selection Bias," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 45(1), pages 275-87, March.
  9. Lee, Inmoo & et al, 1996. "The Costs of Raising Capital," Journal of Financial Research, Southern Finance Association;Southwestern Finance Association, vol. 19(1), pages 59-74, Spring.
  10. Fung, W K H & Rudd, Andrew, 1986. " Pricing New Corporate Bond Issues: An Analysis of Issue Cost and Seasoning Effects," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 41(3), pages 633-43, July.
  11. Ang, James S. & Richardson, Terry, 1994. "The underwriting experience of commercial bank affiliates prior to the Glass-Steagall Act: A reexamination of evidence for passage of the act," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 351-395, January.
  12. Wasserfallen, Walter & Wydler, Daniel, 1988. " Underpricing of Newly Issued Bonds: Evidence from the Swiss Capital Market," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 43(5), pages 1177-91, December.
  13. Jeff Jewell & Miles Livingston, 1998. "Split Ratings, Bond Yields, And Underwriter Spreads," Journal of Financial Research, Southern Finance Association;Southwestern Finance Association, vol. 21(2), pages 185-204, 06.
  14. Gande, Amar & Puri, Manju & Saunders, Anthony, 1999. "Bank entry, competition, and the market for corporate securities underwriting," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 165-195, October.
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