European loan sales rose in Q4

European loan volumes recovered during the fourth quarter of 2018 to €17.7 billion, bringing them close to the total sales figures recorded during the first two quarters of the year.

According to the latest IHS Markit European Loan Volume survey, this represents an 11.63% increase in total sales during the last quarter and a 45.6% rise on levels witnessed in Q4 2017.

Leveraged loan trades accounted for 83% of total volumes, slightly down on the preceding quarter (85.5%).

European investment grade loan sales made up 10% of the overall total, up from 6% in the preceding quarter and 31.6% higher year-on-year.

In contrast, emerging market loan volumes (representing sales for Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa) fell to 7% during Q4 2018, representing an 8.5% decline over the quarter and a 9.1% slide year-on-year.

The aggregate rise in loan volumes was driven particularly by increases from the investment grade segment, up 85% to €1.8 billion in Q3 and up 92% year-on-year. The par segment expanded by 15.3% in Q4 to €13.4 billion, a rise of 49.5% year-on-year.

Distressed markets suffered over the quarter, with total sales contracting 32.6% to €1.3 billion, although this represents an 11.6% rise year-on-year.

The IHS Markit European Loan Volume survey is based on data contributed by 21 buy-side and sell-side institutions.

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