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ESG and Automotive: Ratings and Methodology

Sector Analysis: 14 Nov 2018, 10:23 PM ET - In this piece we discuss our ESG Ratings framework as it pertains to the Automotive sector. We use a total of 13 distinct measures to score each of the 3 ESG parameters and then weight them individually.

FCA 3Q18: Inching towards IG?

Earnings Note: 30 Oct 2018, 10:10 PM ET - FCA is struggling with the challenging market environment alongside its auto-OEM peers, but continues to perform well and improve its balance sheet strength as it inches closer to IG ratings.

LKQ 3Q18: Focus on Delevering, New Share Buyback

Earnings Note: 25 Oct 2018, 7:44 PM ET - LKQ reported further margin pressure and lowered its FCF guidance, and announced a share buyback program. But deleveraging the balance sheet still remains a focus at LKQ as well.

China Autos: Slowing Demand Concerns

Sector Analysis: 18 Oct 2018, 7:02 AM ET - September passenger vehicle sales in China marked the third consecutive month of YoY declines. While YTD sales are still up 0.4%, 2018 is already shaping up to be the weakest growth year for the critical China automotive industry. 

IG Note: US Autos Underperformance – Long End Pain

IG Note: 15 Oct 2018, 3:49 AM ET - Autos is the worst performing IG Sector in the YTD18 period, with the long end bonds of Ford and GM driving the underperformance. 
Focused

HY Note: US Autos Underperformance

HY Note: 07 Sep 2018, 5:06 AM ET - Automotive is the worst performing sector YTD within US HY bonds with excess returns of -3.8% vs +2.3% for ML HY Index. We have had a negative view on all the names driving these negative returns including ATD, TEN, ADNT and TSLA. 

August 2018 US Company Recommendation Changes

US Company Recommendation Changes: 02 Sep 2018, 9:49 PM ET - Our monthly report provides executive summaries for the thirty company recommendation changes made on North American companies during the month of August.
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Tesla: Public Redux – Credit Risk Reversal

HY Note: 26 Aug 2018, 10:14 PM ET - Tesla’s announcement to stay public at least removes some uncertainty for now, but for bondholders the equity-like risk reward symmetry is still not fully reflected in yields despite recent weakness. We shift back to underperform.  
Focused

Tesla: Electric Shock Therapy?

Company Analysis: 08 Aug 2018, 10:27 PM ET - Elon’s tweets and letter to employees about taking Tesla private has torched the shorts and left existing bondholders anxious with many unanswered questions.

Delphi Technologies: Softer Outlook, Move To M/P

Earnings Note: 08 Aug 2018, 9:34 PM ET - Delphi reported a softer-than-expected of 2Q18 results and downwardly revised its FY18 guidance outlays. We view further credit metric improvement as limited over the near-term and, accordingly, move to M/P.

Cooper Tire: 2Q18 | Muted Outlook

Worth Watching: 06 Aug 2018, 10:29 PM ET - Cooper Tire (B1/BB) recorded modest 2Q18 results, reporting both top and bottom line contraction for the second consecutive quarter. The firm saw revenue fall 3.1%, driven primarily by lower tire volumes as well as the impact of weaker price an ..
Focused

Tesla 2Q18: (Borrow-Burn-Build), Repeat

Earnings Note: 02 Aug 2018, 12:00 AM ET - Tesla 2Q18 results are directionally positive and will make the case to the markets that it can borrow, burn and rebuild cash over a full new model production cycle in a pattern Tesla will look to repeat with future launches. 

Cooper-Standard: 2Q18 | Mixed Performance

Worth Watching: 01 Aug 2018, 11:58 PM ET - Cooper-Standard (B1/B+) reported an all-time high for second quarter sales, but a weaker than expected volume mix and unstable market conditions impacted its bottom line. The company saw modest 2.1% revenue expansion, improving to a quarterly h ..

Meritor: 3Q18 | Keep on Trucking

Worth Watching: 01 Aug 2018, 11:57 PM ET - Meritor (B2/BB-) recorded healthy growth in its third quarter, despite the unfavorable impact of rising commodity costs. Sales were up 22.7% YoY, to $1.1 bn, driven by higher production across the board, and one of the highest North American ma ..

Autoliv: 2Q18 | Moving Forward

Worth Watching: 30 Jul 2018, 12:27 PM ET - Autoliv (A2/A-) reported steady growth in its second quarter despite rising raw material prices against the backdrop of rising trade tensions. Consolidated sales grew 11.5% to $2.2 bn, driven by a 4.2% positive impact stemming from currency tra ..

Tenneco: 2Q18 | Margins Pressured

Worth Watching: 29 Jul 2018, 10:40 PM ET - Tenneco reported strong second quarter results, recording top line expansion and still healthy bottom line performance. For the quarter, TEN's value-add revenue increased 8.0% (+6.0% constant currency), to $1.92 bn, supported by healthy growth ..

BorgWarner: 2Q18 | Steady Ahead

Worth Watching: 26 Jul 2018, 11:27 PM ET - BorgWarner (Baa1/BBB+) delivered a strong second quarter performance despite weaker than expected industry volume. The firm reported revenues of $2.69 bn, a 12.7% increase compared to the second quarter of 2017 (+7.3% organic). The expansion oc ..

Euro Auto OEMs: US Tariff Trials and Tribulations

Sector Analysis: 11 Jul 2018, 10:02 PM ET - We frame the potential financial implications of EU-US tariffs across Euro OEMs and while no OEM comes out as a winner, FCA sees less pain while JLR comes out as more exposed. 

Car Rental: Section 232, Used Cars, Fleet Risk

Sector Outlook: 11 Jul 2018, 11:52 AM ET - We ponder the Section 232 auto threats and the more immediate questions on used car prices, new vs. used car affordability, daily car rental fleet replacement cycles, and a fresh test of pricing power in car rental.
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US High Yield Conference Transcript: Tesla

Transcript: 11 Jul 2018, 10:58 AM ET - We provide a transcript of our presentation on Tesla from the New York US High Yield Conference conducted on June 19th 2018.

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