NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Fitch Ratings expects to assign the following ratings to ING IM CLO 2014-1, Ltd./LLC (ING IM CLO 2014-1):
--$256,000,000 class A-1 floating rate notes, 'AAAsf'; Outlook Stable.
ING IM CLO 2014-1, Ltd. (the issuer) and ING IM CLO 2014-1, LLC (the co-issuer) represent an arbitrage cash flow collateralized loan obligation (CLO) that will be managed by ING Alternative Asset Management LLC (ING). Net proceeds from the issuance of notes will be used to purchase a portfolio of approximately $400 million of leveraged loans. The CLO will have a four-year reinvestment period.
KEY RATING DRIVERS
Sufficient Credit Enhancement (CE): CE of 36% for class A-1 notes, in addition to excess spread, is sufficient to protect against portfolio default and recovery rate projections in the 'AAAsf' stress scenario. The level of CE for class A-1 notes is in line with, although slightly lower than, the average for recent CLO issuances.
'B' Asset Quality: The average credit quality of the indicative portfolio is 'B', which is slightly better than that of recent CLOs. Issuers rated in the 'B' rating category denote relatively weak credit quality; however, in Fitch's opinion, the class A-1 notes are unlikely to be affected by the foreseeable level of defaults. The class A-1 notes are robust against default rates of up to 63.1%.
Strong Recovery Expectations: The indicative portfolio consists of 96.1% senior secured loans, 90.4% of which have strong recovery prospects or a Fitch-assigned recovery rating of 'RR2' or higher. This is in line with the seniority profile of recent vintage CLOs.
Consistent Portfolio Parameters: The portfolio will be actively managed and bound by concentration limitations addressing various loan characteristics. The concentration limitations presented to date are within the range of limits set in the majority of recent CLOs. Fitch addressed the impact of the most prominent risk-presenting concentration allowances.
In addition to Fitch's stated criteria, the agency analyzed the structure's sensitivity to the potential variability of key model assumptions including decreases in weighted average spread or recovery rates and increases in default rates or correlation. The class A-1 notes are expected to remain investment grade even under the most extreme sensitivity scenarios. Results under these sensitivity scenarios ranged between 'A+sf' and 'AAAsf' for the class A-1 notes.
The expected ratings are based on information provided to Fitch as of Feb. 5, 2014. Sources of information used to assess these ratings were provided by the arranger, Citigroup Global Markets Inc., and the public domain. Key Rating Drivers and Rating Sensitivities are further described in the accompanying presale report.
The presale report is available to investors on Fitch's web site at www.fitchratings.com. For more information about Fitch's comprehensive subscription service FitchResearch, which includes all presale reports, surveillance and credit reports on more than 20 asset classes, contact product sales at +1-212-908-0800 or at 'firstname.lastname@example.org'.
Additional information is available at 'www.fitchratings.com'.
Applicable Criteria & Related Research:
--'Global Structured Finance Rating Criteria' (May 24, 2013);
--'Global Rating Criteria for Corporate CDOs' (Aug. 8, 2013);
--'Criteria for Interest Rate Stresses in Structured Finance Transactions' (Jan. 23, 2014);
--'Counterparty Criteria for Structured Finance and Covered Bonds' (May 13, 2013).
Applicable Criteria and Related Research: ING IM CLO 2014-1, Ltd./LLC
Global Structured Finance Rating Criteria
Global Rating Criteria for Corporate CDOs
Criteria for Interest Rate Stresses in Structured Finance Transactions
Counterparty Criteria for Structured Finance and Covered Bonds