The Federal Reserve Board on Tuesday announced that, starting in July, certain high-quality commercial mortgage-backed securities issued before January 1, 2009 (legacy CMBS) will become eligible collateral under the Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility (TALF).
The CMBS market, which has financed approximately 20 percent of outstanding commercial mortgages, including mortgages on offices and multi-family residential, retail and industrial properties, came to a standstill in mid-2008. The extension of eligible TALF collateral to include legacy CMBS is intended to promote price discovery and liquidity for legacy CMBS. The resulting improvement in legacy CMBS markets should facilitate the issuance of newly issued CMBS, thereby helping borrowers finance new purchases of commercial properties or refinance existing commercial mortgages on better terms.
To be eligible as collateral for TALF loans, legacy CMBS must be senior in payment priority to all other interests in the underlying pool of commercial mortgages.
Eligible newly issued and legacy CMBS must have at least two triple-A ratings from DBRS, Fitch Ratings, Moody’s Investors Service, Realpoint, or Standard Poor’s and must not have a rating below triple-A from any of these rating agencies.
Read More at Feb Press release
Bloomberg reports in the article - Sales of CMBS plummeted to $12.2 billion last year from a record $237 billion in 2007, according to estimates by JPMorgan Chase & Co.
The announcement comes amid concerns that commercial real-estate loans could generate losses of what The Wall Street Journal estimates to be $100 billion by next year.