Underwriters want Manila retail bond size increased

Reuters

Posted at Aug 13 2010 12:20 PM | Updated as of Aug 13 2010 11:10 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Underwriters of the country's retail bond issue will meet the government on Friday to recommend the issue size is raised to beyond P100 billion ($2.2 billion) because of strong demand, one of the issue managers said.

"Issue managers are collectively asking the BTR (Bureau of Treasury) to provide more supply to the market given the overwhelming demand," Roberto Juanchito Dispo, executive vice president at First Metro Investment Corp., one of the underwriters, told Reuters.

He said the order book for the retail bonds was P200 billion as of early Friday.

The Treasury has sold P55 billion in the retail leg of the bond offer as of Thursday, and is currently set to sell a maximum of P10 billion each on Friday, Monday and Tuesday, when the offer closes.

Meanwhile, National Treasurer Roberto Tan said the government was open to reviewing the maximum P100 billion issue size for a retail bond offer, but had not done so yet.

Tan said he was not aware of a meeting sought by underwriters on the matter later on Friday.

"We cannot overborrow," Tan said. "We'll see until what level we can accommodate," he said regarding an increase in the retail bond offer.