Credit Analysis: BHP Billiton & PotashCorp

A detailed credit analysis on two companies (BHP Billiton and Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan) currently involved in hostile takeover talks from the credit derivative perspective.

Some highlights:

  • BHP Billiton CDS currently at 106.5 bps (up +10%,+ 30%, +36% over the last week, month and quarter, respectively)
  • PotashCorp CDS currently at 113.2 bps (down -5%, up +38%, +0.4% over the last week, month and quarter, respectively)
  • The positive basis in BHP’s 5.25% 12/2015 debt has decreased 64 bps to just 20 bps over the past quarter
  • Volumes in both BHP and PotashCorp have picked up (especially for BHP) relative to previous daily averages.
    • In a previous study conducted by DTC ending in March 2010, an average of $50 million across 4 contracts traded every day for BHP and $10 million across 1 contract traded daily for PotashCorp ($250 million and 20 contracts on a weekly basis for BHP and $50 million across 5 contracts weekly for PotashCorp).
    • For the last week ending August 20, 2010, BHP saw $1.056 billion in gross notional (over 4 times its average) trade across 178 contracts (9 times its average) and PotashCorp saw $61.5 million trade across 9 contracts for the entire week.

Credit analysis provided by Marc Bosset

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