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For the sixth consecutive year, IEM-Finance consultancy has carried out an on-line survey of investors, who are clients of the French primary dealers (SVTs). This survey, conducted on behalf of Agence France Trésor (AFT), assesses quality of commercial relations and services provided by SVTs to their clients.
In 2008, 354 people answered the questionnaire, compared to 341 in 2007.
Main results of the survey
The ranking of the SVTs mentioned as being the main partners of those surveyed on fixed income markets in general has not changed much compared to previous years. The five most frequently cited intermediaries on the list of the five main partners of those surveyed on fixed income markets in general were the same in 2008 as in 2007, only the order has changed (1 - Barclays Capital ; 2 - BNP Paribas ; 3 - Société Générale ; 4 - JP Morgan ; 5 - Deutsche Bank).
Regarding the French Treasury securities market, JP Morgan appeared in 2008 on the list of SVTs who are the most frequently cited as being the first partner of those surveyed ( 1 - BNP Paribas ; 2 - Société Générale ; 3 - Barclays Capital ; 4 - Calyon ; 5 - JP Morgan et HSBC).
The fact of being a SVT remains the most important criterion when investors select an intermediary, even more markedly for those surveyed based in France. The League Tables published by the main financial media has lost in importance in 2008 for the second consecutive year. This is also the case for the League Table published by the AFT, but to a lesser extent. Finally, the importance laid by the clients on the fact of being Paris-based remained stable between 2007 and 2008 and is still much stronger for French surveyed.
Asked what they expect from a high degree of service, clients still rank first the quality of pricing, despite a slight decrease in 2008 (83.7% against 85.8% in 2007) of the proportion of those surveyed who consider this criterion as “very important”. This decrease has also been observed in 2008 for the quality of information, advice and sales coverage (50.7% against 53.3% in 2007) as well as for the quality of research (41.9% against 45% in 2007). On the contrary, the proportion of those surveyed who consider the quality of back/middle office as “very important” increased in 2008 (32.7% against 26.9% in 2007), but it remains inferior to that observed for other services.
The average score of the SVTs' sightly decreased compared to last year and reached 7.2/10 for the quality of information, advice and sales coverage and 7.1/10 for the quality of pricing. It is constant (7.4/10) for the quality of research.
Those surveyed were asked about their expectations from a sovereign issuer such as AFT. Importance of liquidity increased for SVTs' clients in 2008.
Since last year, AFT has introduced more flexibility in the choice of securities to be issued, more often proposing off-the-run securities. Asked for the first time if they were satisfied by the reopening of old lines, 80.4% of those surveyed gave their assesment and among them 93% were “satisfied” or “very satisfied”.
Finally and as in the previous surveys, the majority of clients (90.8%) are "very satisfied" or "satisfied" by the functioning of the French government debt market. The great majority of respondents who expressed an opinion on this issue (61.7%) were “satisfied” or “very satisfied” (92.4%).
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