Through the end of October, non-financial U.S. corporate bond issuance totaled $685 billion, up 31.5% from the same period last year and just $1.5 billion short of the full-year record set in 2012.
Data released by Fitch Ratings show that through the third quarter, U.S. speculative-grade non-financial corporates had the most downgrades since the second quarter of 2009. Industrial and EUI (energy, utilities and infrastructure) firms accounted for 69% of the downgrades in the third quarter.
Despite near record issuance, Fitch says the "par-weighted average coupon has been creeping up across all rating segments since the start of this year, as have spreads."
In the third quarter, the average par-weighted coupon for A-rated bonds was 3.4%; 4.2% for BBB-rated; 8.2% for BB-rated; and 7.8% for B-rated bonds.