|Bid||45.76 x 124500|
|Ask||45.76 x 73800|
|Day's range||45.48 - 46.37|
|52-week range||21.01 - 54.50|
|Beta (5Y monthly)||1.74|
|PE ratio (TTM)||N/A|
|Earnings date||23 Oct 2020|
|Forward dividend & yield||0.90 (1.94%)|
|Ex-dividend date||09 Jul 2020|
|1y target est||62.70|
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- The bond market is finally finding its conscience. Egged on by investors, companies and countries are rushing to sell debt billed as helping to combat climate change or advance social goals. The impending arrival of the European Union in this area is an opportunity to address some of its early flaws.While greater environmental awareness is to be welcomed, linking it to finance requires a coherent structure. The idea behind these bond sales is that the proceeds are, at least partly, tied to action on sustainability. But the existing protocol — contained in tentative guidelines from trade body the International Capital Markets Association — allows plenty of room for interpretation. It would be better if there was a requirement for measurable results, instead of just painting debt in a different color.Covid-related and social-impact debt guidelines are particularly vague. While investors can push back on deals with flaky credentials, the job of vetting such sales probably shouldn’t be left to the market.The incentive to issue so-called green bonds is becoming clearer as surging investor demand makes them an increasingly cheap form of financing. Germany sold a “green” 10-year bund earlier in September. This now trades at a premium to the existing August 2030 benchmark which is identical in every other respect.That sale also encouraged German corporates to get in on the act. Daimler AG followed with a similar instrument that priced 13 basis points lower in yield than the carmaker’s existing debt of similar maturity. Likewise, Volkswagen AG sold eight-year and 12-year green benchmarks on Wednesday, around 14 basis points lower in yield versus the rest of its bonds. Over time this will become a significant saving for Europe's biggest corporate issuer, but shouldn’t it come with greater accountability?So investors will pay a premium — or rather "greenium" — to own these instruments. The green carrots are there. There also need to be some green sticks.A couple of recent deals point to the way forward. Take Wednesday’s eight-year sustainability-linked 1.9 billion-euro ($2.2 billion) deal from Novartis AG. It has an important feature — a potential 25-basis-points hike in the annual coupon in the last three years of the bond’s life. That would kick in if the pharma giant misses targets for increasing patient access in low-income countries by 2025. Last week, Brazilian paper company Suzano SA sold 10-year bonds in dollars with a similar penalty if emission targets are not hit.It can't be too much of a stretch for Europe to devise a regulatory framework imposing conditions on any new environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG)-related bonds, and to penalize any issuer that falls short of its stated prospectus aims.The EU is making green and social bonds a cornerstone of its pandemic Recovery Fund — with 225 billion euros planned, this will make it the undisputed green bond king, as this matches the total amount of green bonds globally last year. With the bloc yet to confirm its own guidelines on such debt, surely there is no better time to provide some clear leadership.This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Marcus Ashworth is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering European markets. He spent three decades in the banking industry, most recently as chief markets strategist at Haitong Securities in London.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Volkswagen AG made its green-bond debut about two weeks after Daimler AG, tapping a booming market to raise low-cost funds for the shift to electric vehicles.The maker of VW and Audi brand cars sold 2 billion euros ($2.4 billion) of green bonds divided between eight-year and 12-year tranches. Bids peaked above 11 billion euros, according to a person familiar with the offering, who asked not to be identified because they’re not authorized to speak about itVW will save almost 3 million euros a year in borrowing costs from the green-bond deal, as the carmarker followed Daimler in benefiting from pricing advantages versus conventional debt. Debut sales by two of Europe’s biggest corporate borrowers, alongside huge European Union issuance plans, will also help further propel the environmental debt market by adding more size and variety in a sector traditionally dominated by banks, utilities and governments.“There is a huge demand for green assets,” said Michael Kobel, a portfolio manager at Union Investment in Germany. “I am happy to see a growing number of issuers.”VW plans to use green funds to help pay for electric-vehicle projects and charging stations, as it seeks to challenge Tesla Inc. and Renault SA. The company aims to introduce about 75 new electric car models by 2029, according to its green-finance framework, which was published in March, just as coronavirus upheavals shuttered bond markets. Efforts have been hindered by software issues in the ID.3 model.The company has been monitoring market conditions since the publication of the framework, it said in an emailed response to Bloomberg News questions.READ MORE: VW EU2b Green; 8Y MS +125, 12Y MS +150Demand for the VW offering also shows that investors have appetite for green bonds from borrowers previously marred by environmental issues. In 2015, the automaker admitted that about 11 million of its diesel vehicles worldwide were fitted with devices that gave false readings during emissions tests. It is still contending with lawsuits from the Dieselgate scandal, while trumpeting new environmental initiatives.“There is hope for companies which are associated with the most unsustainable practices,” said Daniel Ender, a credit strategist at ABN Amro Bank NV.Volkswagen priced its 1.25 billion-euro eight-year tranche about 15.4 basis points tighter than its conventional curve, according to Bloomberg’s valuation service BVAL. The 750 million euro 12-year bond was around 13.6 basis points tighter. That translates into annual savings of as much as 1.92 million euros a year on the eight year tranche and about 1.02 million euros on the 12-year, based on Bloomberg calculations.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Hagens Berman attorneys announced details of a $700 million settlement with Mercedes on behalf of owners of polluting BlueTEC diesel vehicles.