Japan Airlines Said to Plan Yen Bond as Its Yield Premiums Fall

Japan Airlines Co. is planning a yen bond sale next month, people familiar with the matter said, in what would be its first debt sale since March last year as its yield premiums fall.

The Tokyo-based carrier has hired banks for an offering of about 10 billion yen ($92 million) of five-year notes, said the people, who asked not be identified because the discussions are private. A Japan Airlines spokesperson declined to comment.

The yield premium on JAL’s 2023 bonds widened more than 50 basis points to 104 basis points in May last year as the Covid-19 pandemic put the brakes on international travel, but the spread has decreased 25 basis points since then as vaccine roll-outs spark expectations of a gradual recovery in tourism, Bloomberg-compiled data show.

Japan Airlines declined earlier this month to issue any profit guidance due to uncertainty surrounding the pandemic as it reported a loss for the year ended March 31.

But recent debt offerings by airlines suggests there’s demand among investors for the sector’s notes as they bet on a rebound in passenger traffic after an easing in infections. Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. sold its first dollar bond since the 1990s earlier this month, while Ryanair Holdings Plc, Europe’s biggest discount airline, priced notes in euros this week.

Japan’s biggest carrier, ANA Holdings Inc., also said Wednesday it plans to sell sustainability-linked notes.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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