Europe's corporate bond market is showing a glimmer of hope for borrowers, as even the continent's beleaguered financial sector is finding a warmer welcome.
With markets in general a touch more optimistic to begin 2012, borrowers took advantage.
Wednesday was the busiest day for corporate bond sales in Europe in a year, and notably some of the issuance this week is coming from banks. So far this week, there's been a bit more than €10-billion of senior unsecured bonds sold by banks.
"It's not a mad dash for cash by the non-financial corporate sector either, in order to take advantage of - and satisfy - a crazy investor grabfest, but we're seeing a steady addition of risk surprisingly across most of the corporate credit spectrum," said Suki Mann, a strategist at Societe Generale, in a note to clients.
Among the borrowers were automakers BMW and Renault. BMW sold bonds and had orders for almost three times what was on offer.