CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Fitch Ratings expects to assign the following rating and Rating Outlook to GoldenTree Loan Opportunities VIII, Limited/LLC:
--$364,800,000 class A notes 'AAAsf'; Outlook Stable.
GoldenTree Loan Opportunities VIII, Limited (the issuer) and GoldenTree Loan Opportunities VIII, LLC (the co-issuer) comprise an arbitrage cash flow collateralized loan obligation (CLO) that will be managed by GoldenTree Asset Management LP (GoldenTree). Net proceeds from the issuance of the secured and subordinated notes will be used to purchase a portfolio of $600 million of primarily senior secured leveraged loans. The CLO will have a four-year reinvestment period.
KEY RATING DRIVERS
Sufficient Credit Enhancement: Credit enhancement (CE) of 39.2% for class A notes, in addition to excess spread, is sufficient to protect against portfolio default and recovery rate projections in a 'AAAsf' stress scenario. The degree of CE available to class A notes is in line with, although slightly higher than, the average CE of recent CLO issuance.
'B/B-' Asset Quality: The average credit quality of the indicative portfolio is 'B/B-', which is comparable to recent CLOs. Issuers rated in the 'B' rating category denote a highly speculative credit quality; however, in Fitch Ratings' opinion, class A notes are unlikely to be affected by the foreseeable level of defaults. Class A notes are projected to be able to withstand default rates of up to 67.5%.
Strong Recovery Expectations: The indicative portfolio consists of 95% first lien senior secured loans. Approximately 93% of the indicative portfolio has either strong recovery prospects or a Fitch-assigned recovery rating of 'RR2' or higher.
Portfolio Parameters: Most of the concentration limitations and collateral quality test levels 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 the Fitch stressed portfolio analysis.
Fitch evaluated 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. Fitch expects the class A notes 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 notes.
The expected ratings are based on information provided to Fitch as of March 3, 2014. Sources of information used to assess these ratings were provided by the arranger, J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, and the public domain.
Key Rating Drivers and Rating Sensitivities are further detailed in the accompanying presale report, available at 'www.fitchratings.com'.
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 and Covered Bonds' (Jan. 23, 2014);
--'Counterparty Criteria for Structured Finance and Covered Bonds' (May 13, 2013).
Applicable Criteria and Related Research: GoldenTree Loan Opportunities VIII, Limited/LLC (US STRUCTURED CREDIT)
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