LONDON, June 15 (IFR) - Abertis shares fell below 15.105 on Monday, the reported trigger level for a cash call on Obrascon Huarte Lain’s margin loan secured against the stock.
The Spanish construction firm disclosed in a March bond prospectus that the 1.1bn margin loan, secured by its entire 13.93% stake in Spanish infrastructure company Abertis, would require cash collateral if the share price falls below 15.105.
Rating agency Fitch warned last week that the margin loan could create “potential pressure on OHL,” stating that the cash margin call was set at 15.10, according to the last publicly available information from December 2014.
Abertis’ shares were quoted at 14.580 at 1300 BST.
OHL has already had to post more collateral against a margin loan on OHL Mexico stock in recent weeks, as allegations of corruption at its Mexican unit triggered a slide in its share price.
The Abertis margin loan sits at OHL Emisiones SA, a vehicle owned by OHL’s concession division OHL Concesiones SA.
“My best guess is that they have to put around 40m of extra cash against the margin facility,” said a hedge fund investor. “OHL Concesiones should be able to make that though, as they have 200m cash on hand.”
Fitch said in its report last week that “such a cash margin call would absorb the limited liquidity that is available at OHL Concesiones, increasing the risk of OHL SA having to support OHL Concesiones in cash in case of a further margin call on the OHL Mexico-margin loan.”
OHL’s bonds are suffering on Monday, with its 325m 5.5% 2023 note falling from a cash price bid of 82 to 79.60, according to Tradeweb prices.
This is a fresh low for the bonds, which were issued at 93.866 to yield 6.5% in March.
OHL has taken steps to reduce the pressure from the margin loan, disclosing in its first-quarter results that it refinanced part of the debt in April with a new 273m loan without triggers. Instead, the loan is backed by a derivatives deal to protect the guarantee from swings in the company’s share price.
UBS provided the new loan and derivatives agreement. (Reporting by Robert Smith, editing by Alex Chambers and Julian Baker.)