Magazine article American Banker

Using New Securities Powers, Paris Bank Eyes Yankee Bonds

Magazine article American Banker

Using New Securities Powers, Paris Bank Eyes Yankee Bonds

Article excerpt

By J. ALEX TARQUINIO Banque Nationale de Paris recently got authorization from the Federal Reserve Board to create a U.S. investment banking subsidiary.

Unlike many U.S. banks that have first established a securities subsidiary and then applied for the power to underwrite corporate debt and equity, Banque Nationale applied for, and received, the widest possible securities powers from the start.

The French bank, with $345 billion of assets and offices in 80 countries, plans to originate and distribute equity and debt for both U.S. and global issuers through its New York subsidiary, BNP Capital Markets LLC.

Bank executives have targeted the "Yankee bond" market, in which global issuers offer U.S. dollar-denominated debt.

"Our goal is to serve BNP's existing U.S. client base and create cross- border transactions for the bank's customers in Europe and Asia," said Larry Sobin, chief executive of BNP Capital Markets.

Mr. Sobin joined BNP in June from HSBC Holdings, where he was chief operating officer of the London-based company's U.S. securities subsidiary. Before that, he had been a consultant at Price Waterhouse for banks trying to get into underwriting U.S. securities.

BNP Capital Markets expects to have about 90 employees by Jan. 1, when its U.S.-based structured finance group and part of its U.S. brokerage, BNP Securities, will be transferred from other parts of the bank.

The structured finance group is expected to account for about half of Mr. …

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