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IRFC tax-free bonds subscribed fully in first hour; Nabard issue too a big hit
March, 10th 2016

The tax-free bond issue of Indian Railway Finance Corporation (IRFC), the last issue for this financial year, received a strong response on Thursday, with Rs 2,450 crore worth of papers getting fully subscribed within the first hour of listing on BSE.

By 11.00 AM, bids were received for 50,53,107 bonds compared with 50,00,000 bonds on the block. Major demand was seen from category 2 investors, who include companies, statutory bodies, cooperative banks and charitable trusts. This category of investors bid for 3.85 times the quota limit.

IRFC has offered retail investors 7.29 per cent return on 10-year tenure and 7.64 per cent on 15-year tenure bonds. For non-retail categories, the bond issue is offering 7.04 per cent over 10 years and 7.35 per cent over 15 years.

In the Union Budget presented last year, seven public sector companies were supposed to sell Rs 40,000 crore worth of tax-free bonds, out of which the National Highways Authority of India was allowed to issued bonds worth Rs 24,000 crore and the Indian Railway Finance Corporation Rs 6,000 crore.

Category 3 investors, who include HNIs and Hindu undivided families, bid for 1.42 times the quota limit. The retail quota was subscribed 0.37 times. There was no bid from insurance companies and FIIs in the first few hours.

The demand was firm even as another tax-free bond issue, that from Nabard, was on. That issue, too, got fully subscribed on the first day itself on Wednesday. Nabard has offered 7.64 per cent rate of interest to retail investors for 15-year tenure and 7.29 per cent for 10-year tenure. For non-retail investors, the rate of interest is 7.04 per cent on 10-year bonds and 7.29 per cent on 15-year bonds.

Recently, National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) had advanced the closure of the second tranche of the Rs 3,300 crore bonds issue to February 26, from the scheduled closure of March 1 in view of huge demand.

For investors who fall under the 30 per cent tax slab, the effective rate of interest on these bonds works out to around 10.64 per cent and 10.32 per cent for tenures of 15 years and 10 years, respectively.

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