September 1, 2004
Bidding on bonds
Competition in the Caribbean's debt capital markets is about to heat up. Brokerage firms like Caribbean Money Market Brokers (CMMB) are hoping to prise some bond mandates away from the banks by establishing a real bond market in Port-of-Spain, the region's self-proclaimed financial capital.
Merchant banks - as investment banks are known in the Caribbean - owned by giants like RBTT and Republic Bank have always dominated what they call a bond business. But this resembles a private placement affair where banks underwrite a sovereign or corporate issue and sell it to a few favored institutional inves
Pointing to unused money in investors' portfolios and the unmet needs of smaller companies, Caribbean brokerage firms are gearing up to rival banks' bond business.