BEIJING, Aug. 4 (Xinhua) — Google’s parent company Alphabet on Monday lent $10 billion to the investment-grade corporate bond market, or $10 billion in bonds, the largest ever by Alphabet, but also the lowest in corporate history. Of the $10 billion in bonds, $1 billion is five-year bonds with a coupon rate of 0.45 per cent. Apple also issued $1.5 billion in bonds at a coupon rate of 0.45 percent in 2013.
Investors seem edited by bonds because of the low benchmark interest rate in the United States and the Fed’s purchase of corporate bonds to support the issue. The deal has more than $31 billion in demand, according to Refinitiv IFR. Alphabet issued $1 billion of bonds at a coupon rate of 1.25 percent in May 2014, when the coupon rate hit a new low for the company, this time even lower.
Tom Graff, fixed income director at Brown Advisory, said: “Alphabet is one of those high-quality issuers who set the coupon rate very low and we are already at this stage. Why? Because there are many buyers who need short-term, non-considered returns. You know, it’s yielding twice as much as a five-year Treasury note. The yield on the five-year Treasury note has fallen to 0.228 percent.
Last week Alphabet reported a drop in quarterly revenue, the first decline since the company went public. Still, Google’s share price has not been affected as the advertising business is recovering, offsetting some of the decline.
“We’re going through a recession, and google is one of the few companies that are of super-quality and unaffected,” Graff said. “
In June, Amazon also issued a three-year bond with a coupon rate of just 0.4 per cent, a record low for corporate debt, and Alphabet’s corporate debt was only slightly higher than Amazon’s, the second-to-last. But Amazon’s five-year bond has a coupon rate of 0.80 percent and Alphabet’s 0.45 percent, meaning Alphabet’s financing costs are cheaper.
Alphabet’s $10 billion corporate bond, which includes seven-, 20-year and 40-year loans of $4.5 billion, will be used for general corporate purposes, including acquisitions, and another $5.5 billion for green projects.