Press Release

DBRS Assigns AA (low) Rating to Santander Totta S.A. Covered Bonds (Obrigações Hipotecárias - Mortgages) Series 24

Covered Bonds
July 05, 2019

DBRS Ratings Limited (DBRS) assigned a rating of AA (low) to the Series 24 Obrigações Hipotecárias (OH, the Portuguese legislative covered bonds) issued under Banco Santander Totta S.A. (Totta or the Issuer) EUR 12.5 billion OH Programme (the Programme).

Series 24 is a EUR 1,100 million fixed-rate bond, paying a coupon of 0.412%. The expected maturity date is 5 July 2029 and the final (extended) maturity date falls in July 2030.

At the same time, DBRS discontinued the rating of Series 13, which was repaid on 11 June 2019.

All covered bonds (CBs) issued under the Programme rank pari passu with each other and are currently rated AA (low) by DBRS.

The rating is based on the following analytical considerations:

-- A Covered Bonds Attachment Point (CBAP) of “A”, which is the Long-Term Issuer Rating of Totta. Totta is the Issuer of and Reference Entity for the Programme.
-- A Legal and Structuring Framework (LSF) Assessment of “Average” associated with the Programme.
-- An LSF-Implied Likelihood (LSF-L) of “A”.
-- A two-notch uplift for high recovery prospects.
-- A committed minimum overcollateralisation (OC) of 15%. DBRS gives full credit to such commitment in accordance with its principal methodology. Such level is not subject to a haircut, as DBRS considers it to be persistent based on historically observed levels.

The transaction was analysed with the DBRS European Covered Bond Cash Flow tool. The main assumptions focused on the timing of defaults and recoveries of the assets, interest rate stresses and market value spreads to calculate liquidation values on the cover pool (CP).

Everything else being equal, a one-notch downgrade of the CBAP would lead to a one-notch downgrade of the LSF-L, resulting in a one-notch downgrade of the covered bonds rating.

Everything else being equal, a downgrade of the CBAP by one notch would lead to a downgrade of the LSF-L by one notch, resulting in a downgrade of the Covered Bonds (CB) ratings by one-notch. In addition, all else unchanged, the OH ratings would be downgraded if the quality of the CP and the level of OC were no longer sufficient to support a two-notch uplift for high recovery prospects.

Approximately 97% of the loans in the CP are floating rate, indexed to different bases and reset at different times, while all OH series are fixed rate. The interest rate mismatch is mitigated by intra-group swap agreements; however, the swap documentation is not consistent with DBRS’s “Derivative Criteria for European Structured Finance Transactions”. As such, no credit was given to swaps in DBRS’s analysis, and the interest rate mismatch has been taken into account in DBRS’s analysis.

For further information on the Programme, please refer to the rating report at www.dbrs.com.

Notes:
All figures are in euros unless otherwise noted.

The principal methodology applicable to the rating is: “Rating and Monitoring Covered Bonds”.

In DBRS’s opinion, the changes under consideration do not require the application of the entire principal methodology. Therefore, DBRS focused on the cash flow analysis.

Other methodologies referenced in this transaction are listed at the end of this press release.

These may be found on www.dbrs.com at: http://www.dbrs.com/about/methodologies.

For a more detailed discussion of the sovereign risk impact on Structured Finance ratings, please refer to “Appendix C: The Impact of Sovereign Ratings on Other DBRS Credit Ratings” of the “Rating Sovereign Governments” methodology at https://www.dbrs.com/research/333487/rating-sovereign-governments.

The sources of data and information used for this rating include investor reports and stratification tables provided by the Issuer.

DBRS did not rely upon third-party due diligence in order to conduct its analysis.

At the time of the initial rating, DBRS was not supplied with third-party assessments. However, this did not impact the rating analysis.

DBRS considers the data and information available to it for the purposes of providing this rating to be of satisfactory quality.

DBRS does not audit or independently verify the data or information it receives in connection with the rating process.

The last rating action on this transaction took place on 20 July 2018, when DBRS confirmed the AA (low) ratings on the outstanding OH.

Information regarding DBRS ratings, including definitions, policies and methodologies, is available on www.dbrs.com.

For further information on DBRS historical default rates published by the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) in a central repository, see: http://cerep.esma.europa.eu/cerep-web/statistics/defaults.xhtml.

Ratings assigned by DBRS Ratings Limited are subject to EU and US regulations only.

Lead Analyst: Roger Bickert, Vice President
Rating Committee Chair: Christian Aufsatz, Managing Director
Initial Rating Date: 27 February 2012

DBRS Ratings Limited
20 Fenchurch Street
31st Floor
London
EC3M 3BY
United Kingdom
Registered and incorporated under the laws of England and Wales: Company No. 7139960

The rating methodologies used in the analysis of this transaction can be found at: http://www.dbrs.com/about/methodologies.

-- Rating and Monitoring Covered Bonds
-- Rating and Monitoring Covered Bonds Addendum: Market Value Spreads
-- Global Methodology for Rating Banks and Banking Organisations
-- Legal Criteria for European Structured Finance Transactions
-- Derivative Criteria for European Structured Finance Transactions
-- Interest Rate Stresses for European Structured Finance Transactions
-- Master European Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities Rating Methodology and Jurisdictional Addenda
-- Operational Risk Assessment for European Structured Finance Originators
-- Operational Risk Assessment for European Structured Finance Servicers
-- Rating Sovereign Governments

A description of how DBRS analyses structured finance transactions and how the methodologies are collectively applied can be found at: http://www.dbrs.com/research/278375.

For more information on this credit or on this industry, visit www.dbrs.com or contact us at info@dbrs.com.

ALL DBRS RATINGS ARE SUBJECT TO DISCLAIMERS AND CERTAIN LIMITATIONS. PLEASE READ THESE DISCLAIMERS AND LIMITATIONS AND ADDITIONAL INFORMATION REGARDING DBRS RATINGS, INCLUDING DEFINITIONS, POLICIES, RATING SCALES AND METHODOLOGIES.