AGL not moving at S&P revision

AGL Energy has dismissed talk of damage to its balance sheet following Standard and Poor’s downgrading of its hybrid securities – deciding not to redeem them early.
AGL not moving at S&P revision AGL not moving at S&P revision AGL not moving at S&P revision AGL not moving at S&P revision AGL not moving at S&P revision


Bianca Bartucciotto

S&P advised the market it had revised the equity status of hybrid equities issued to major companies to convert them to debt.

AGL said its $650 million subordinated notes, which had now received intermediate equity content, still remained an attractive part of the company’s finances.

The company will keep the equities, which are due June 9, 2039.

Origin Energy also decided on Wednesday against an early sale.

Origin said it looked at a $900 million subordinated note offering on the ASX and a €500 ($A615) million capital securities issue, which was reclassified as part of S&P’s revision.

The move to re-examine the hybrid equity instruments has infuriated the companies that have lashed out at the retroactive application of the ruling.

Hybrid securities are part debt, part equity securities. They are classified by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission as extremely risky for investors. They are often unsecured, some allowing the company to suspend interest payments, and have extremely long timeframes.

ASIC has gone as far as issuing a warning about trading hybrid securities after a year of rising issuance.