UBS on QE and its impact on corporate bond market

From Suki Mann, FI strategist at UBS (bold statements from us):

« Corporate bond market capitulation: Is it coming?

We believe that if the ECB announces any kind of corporate bond buying this week, investors could well embark on a fairly aggressive grabfest ahead of the actual commencement of the programme.

Already bereft of supply, decent yield, spreads unchanged into the macro-headwinds; and, plenty of pent-up demand for paper as cash keeps rolling-in to the asset class, we think that the actual announcement could see a lurch tighter in spreads. That is, QE is not in the current price. Some think it is, we don’t.

How much can spreads tighten? The answer ultimately depends on the modalities of the program (size, duration, mix). »

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Morgan Stanley on « QE and beyond »

From Srikanth Sankaran & Shrina B. Poojara at Morgan Stanley fixed income research team:

« We maintain a constructive bias on credit heading into Thursday’s ECB meeting. Despite the outperformance of European credit in recent months, we do not think that QE upside is fully priced in. A 20-25bp compression in IG spreads is likely, should the ECB deliver.    

Sovereign QE is now our economists’ base case: Our economists’ base case now is €500 billion of government bond purchases and €100 billion of private sector asset purchases. In terms of timing, the complexity of designing a sovereign QE programme makes January 22 an ambitious start day. Announcement in January and execution in March is more realistic, they think. »

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