Shares in Standard Life Aberdeen (LON:SLA) have been sold off in London this morning, as the company unveiled debt offering plans. In a separate development, Moody’s lifted the group’s long-term issuer rating, in the wake of the merger between Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management earlier this year.
As of 09:26 BST, Standard Life Aberdeen’s share price had given up 2.07 percent to 424.90p, underperforming the broader UK market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index currently standing 0.05 percent higher at 7,472.12 points. The group’s shares are more than 14 percent up in the year-to-date, as compared with a near five-percent rise in the Footsie.
Standard Life Aberdeen announced in a short statement to the London Stock Exchange this morning that it had issued an invitation to investors to attend a fixed income roadshow in London, Singapore and Hong Kong in relation to a proposed subordinated debt offering. The blue-chip company explained that the offering was part of its active capital management strategy and any proceeds raised will be used for general corporate purposes, including to refinance existing debt.
In other news, Alliance News reported this week that Moody’s had upgraded the company’s long-term issuer rating to A3 from Baa1, and its subordinate rating to Baa1 from Baa2, and changed its outlook on the ratings to Stable from Under Review. The move follows the merger between Standard Life and Aberdeen and the ratings agency expects the enlarged business to benefit from a ‘more diverse’ revenue mix, cross-selling opportunities and expense reductions.
The 17 analysts offering 12-month price targets for Standard Life Aberdeen for the Financial Times have a median target of 460.00p on the shares, with a high estimate of 520.00p and a low estimate of 355.00p. As of September 29, the consensus forecast amongst 21 polled investment analysts covering the blue-chip group has it that the company will outperform the market.