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European securitisation market buoyant Back  
The European securitisation market is on target to meet 20 per cent year-on-year growth expectations by the end of 2002 after an impressive third quarter performance, according to statistics released by Standard & Poor’s.
Kurt Sampson, managing director at Standard & Poor’s European Structured Finance Ratings group, says that despite the current economic downturn, the market has shown a consistently strong growth pattern. ‘The fourth quarter pipeline remains robust and we believe 20 per cent growth is possible, provided there are no further economic shocks,’ he says.
Sampson also added that investor demand for plain vanilla asset-backed bonds in particular remains strong following their relatively strong performance vis-?-vis other sectors of the European fixed-income markets.
Publicly rated European securitization issuance ended the third quarter of 2002 24.2 per cent higher at $39.5 billion compared with $31.2 billion a year earlier. A total of 50 transactions closed, nine more than in 2001.
Volumes for the first nine months of this year are also strong, up 25 per cent at $109.5 billion compared with $87.7 billion a year earlier, based on Standard & Poor’s assessment of the market.
The number of transactions that closed, however, was only up 15 per cent, at 155 versus 134 last year, underscoring an increased trend toward larger-scale issuance.
‘Securitisation techniques have been firmly embraced as a financing tool in Europe,’ says Sampson, and ‘transactions are becoming notably larger, demonstrating the market’s increased comfort with the product.’

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