We wrote here yesterday on how Turkish hard currency bonds have been given the nod to join some Barclays global indices as a result of the country’s elevation to investment grade. Turkish dollar bonds will also move to the Investment grade sub-index of JPMorgan’s flagship EMBI Global on June 28.
Local lira debt meanwhile will enter JPM’s GBI-EM Global Diversified IG 15 percent Cap Index — the top-tier of the bank’s GBI-EM index. But the big prize, an invitation into Citi’s mega World Government Bond Index, is still some way off. Requiring a still higher credit rating, WGBI membership is an honour that has been accorded to only four emerging markets so far.
Still, the Turkish Treasury is not complaining. Even before last week’s upgrade to investment grade by Moody’s, it was borrowing from the lira bond market at record cheap levels of around 5 percent for two-year cash. Ten-year yields are down half a percentage point this year. One reason of course is the gush of liquidity from Western central banks. But most funds (at least those who were allowed to do so) had not waited for the Moody’s signal before buying Turkish bonds. So the bond market was already trading Turkey as investment grade.
RBS analysts reckon that by end-April, Turkey had raised 40 percent of this year’s 152 billion-lira borrowing plan, while the average bid-cover ratio at bond auctions this year has been 3.2, compared to 2.5 in 2012. They write:
We anticipate demand to strengthen further following the recent rating upgrade by Moody’s to the investment grade level, providing Turkey with a whole new investor base.