Links 8/1/08 Posted on July 31, 2008 by Yves Smith Owner of 44-pound cat found; foreclosed woman couldn’t care for pet McClatchy Hungry seals ‘steer by the stars’ BBC Citizens use YouTube to keep gov’t in check Silicon Moscow to seize grain export controls Financial Times (hat tip reader Michael) More Arrows Seen Pointing to a Recession New York Times. We are only one day ahead of the Times (see yesterday’s “Recession Sightings Picking Up Steam“). Wachovia will walk-over-you Bronte Capital Unconvinced by economic growth? Blame the deflator Reuters Can This Planet Be Saved? Paul Krugman Antidote du jour: Post navigation ← Massachusetts Sues Merrill Over Auction-Rate Securities Alternative Stores of Value for the New Millennium → Subscribe to Post Comments 4 comments doc holiday August 1, 2008 at 12:38 am Just for fun, some covered bond crap: EUROPEAN COVERED BOND FACT BOOKhttp://ihfp.wharton.upenn.edu/2007Readings/I-European%20Covered%20Bond%20Factbook.pdf Investors should beware that, in the absence of a clearly communicated overcollateralization strategy, covered bond ratings on a particular issuer could demonstrate a lower long-term rating stability compared with typical securitizations where possible pool migrations are clearly deﬁ ned in advance. This is because the overcollateralization necessary to achieve a given target rating is typically over and above the minimum regulatory overcollateralization requirements. A bank’s clearly communicated strategy with regard to expected credit risks, the diversiﬁ cation of the cover pool, tolerance levels for interest rates, currency rate risks, and liquidity risks, as well as the willingness to provide a cushion over and above the minimum regulatory requirements, can on the other hand mitigate such risk. A commitment to the Covered Bond compliance test is regarded as an adequate practical application of the above. Anonymous August 1, 2008 at 12:47 am Ok, one more: I like the ability to swap and transfer, i.e, substitute components of these toxic QSPEs: Irish Covered Bonds Primer: http://www.aibifs.com/brochures/Intro%20to%20covered%20bonds%20July%202005.pdf Substitute assets with a maturity of up to three months and up to a limit of 20% of totalcover assets are allowable The Act defines substitute assets asdeposits with eligible banks or tier one assets. The Act also provides that any other specifiedkind of property may be designated by Ministerial order as a substitution asset Third, the legislation is flexible in many respects, includingthe relatively wide geographical base for qualifying loans, provision for the use ofsubstitution assets and derivatives, and the scope for overcollateralisation. dh August 1, 2008 at 1:00 am Ok, another: Covering Covered Bonds http://alephblog.com/2008/07/29/covering-covered-bonds/ If the insurance company’s General Account is insolvent, the separate account policyholders are secured by the assets of the separate account. The separate account is tested quarterly for sufficiency of assets over liabilities. If there isn’t enough of a positive margin, more securities must be added. If those assets prove insufficient in an insolvency, they stand in line for the difference with the general account claimants.That last example, obscure as it is, is the closest to the way a covered bond functions under the current Treasury Department’s statement on best practices for covered bonds. Here is what collateral is eligible for the as the pool of assets securing the bonds (stuff from the Treasury document in italics): Covered Bonds may account for no more than four percent of an issuers’ liabilities after issuance. Issuers must enter into a deposit agreement, e.g., guaranteed investment contract, or other arrangement whereby the proceeds of Cover Pool assets are invested (any such arrangement, a “Specified Investment”) at the time of issuance with or by one or more financially sound counterparties. Following a payment default by the issuer or repudiation by the FDIC as conservator or receiver, the Specified Investment should pay ongoing scheduled interest and principal payments so long as the Specified Investment provider receives proceeds of the Cover Pool assets at least equal to the par value of the Covered Bonds. The purpose of the Specified Investment is to prevent anacceleration of the Covered Bond due to the insolvency of the issuer. dh August 1, 2008 at 1:05 am Best Practices for Residential Covered Bondshttp://www.treas.gov/press/releases/reports/USCoveredBondBestPractices.pdf In the case of an issuer default, Covered Bonds are structured to avoidprepayment prior to the date of maturity. This is accomplishedthrough swap agreements and deposit agreements (e.g., guaranteedinvestment contracts). MBS investors, in contrast, are exposed toprepayment risk in the case of a mortgage default or prepayment. The FDIC recognizes that some covered bond programs include mortgage-backedsecurities in limited quantities. Staff believes that allowing some limited inclusionof AAA-rated mortgage-backed securities as collateral for covered bonds duringthis interim, evaluation period will support enhanced liquidity for mortgagefinance without increasing the risks to the deposit insurance fund. Therefore,covered bonds that include up to 10 percent of their collateral in AAA-ratedmortgage securities backed solely by mortgage loans that are made in compliancewith guidance referenced above will meet the standards set forth in the PolicyStatement. In addition, substitution collateral for the covered bonds may includecash and Treasury and agency securities as necessary to prudently manage thecover pool. Securities backed by tranches in other securities or assets (such asCollateralized Debt Obligations) are not considered to be acceptable collateral Comments are closed. Tip Jar Please Donate or Subscribe!