Oman bonds may join JPMorgan's index

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Oman bonds may join JPMorgans index
If data between 2012 and 2014 were used, Oman would qualify for inclusion in the index.

London - 2015 data, though, will be part of review process

By Reuters

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Published: Sun 12 Jun 2016, 7:24 PM

Last updated: Sun 12 Jun 2016, 9:29 PM

In a year of comebacks in emerging markets, Oman returned to the international bond market for the first time in nearly 20 years last week with a $2.5 billion offering comprising five and 10-year notes. While the outcome was considered decent by bankers, there were a couple of aspects of the deal that raised eyebrows.
One was that the notes are likely to be eligible for inclusion in JPMorgan's widely-followed EMBI Global Diversified index, even though Oman is considered a high-income economy by the World Bank.
The multilateral institution defines any country with a gross national income per capita of $12,736 within that category - much lower than Oman's levels.
Even so, a sovereign or quasi-sovereign can qualify for inclusion in the Global Diversified index as long as a country's GNI per capita is below a certain threshold for three consecutive years. That threshold changes annually depending on economic variables.
If data between 2012 and 2014 were used, Oman would qualify for inclusion in the index. In 2014, for example, its GNI per capita was $18,340, while the index income ceiling was $19,708. In 2013, Oman's GNI per capita was $19,280 compared with an index income ceiling of $19,585.
JPMorgan has yet to make a decision as it considers 2015 data as part of its review process.
Leads, however, are confident Oman will be included in the index, which helps boost liquidity. It meets all the criteria for eligibility, said one, who added that the likelihood of index eligibility was helpful but not a game-changer for the deal.

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