Friday, August 31, 2018
A Pragmatist's Guide to Leveraged Finance: Credit Analysis for Bonds and Bank Debt (paperback) (Applied Corporate Finance) 1st Edition by Robert S. Kricheff (FT Press)
I am a senior analyst in a buy-side leveraged finance shop and believe the book does a great job of outlining the process of credit analysis and bond assessment for the junior analyst. I read the book to see whether it made sense as a training tool for our new junior analysts and I believe strongly that it does. In addition, while I didn't think I was the target market, I found the book to be an interesting read and a worthwhile look into the mental systems used by a long-time analyst. I definitely took away a few ideas on how I might alter my own procedures for the better. Mr Kricheff lays out the nuts and bolts of who the players are in the market, then moves on to the issuance of a new piece of debt and shows the new analyst what pieces of information are important to look for and even how to prioritize between different pieces of information. The book lays out the basics of what a bond is, how they are priced and how to analyze the structure of the security. He looks at how to analyze the underlying company. He covers what he thinks are the two first items to consider (liquidity and asset coverage) and then moves on to discuss which financial measures are important and why; what are the important covenants and how can one use them. How much modeling do you need to do, how can you begin the process and how in-depth should a model realistically be? How can you use your model to adapt to changing newsflow or market pricing? What are some other pieces of information used by an analyst to decide between competing investment choices? These are all of the types of things covered in the book. The book does not target the senior analyst, but if one were interested in reading about another analyst's process, you could find the book interesting. For the new junior analyst, I think the book could accelerate the learning process significantly and give the new analyst a significant leg up in starting his/her career.