The issuer is International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) which is part of the World Bank Group, and the bond was issued in form of floating rate notes (Notes). The Notes issue is a risk coverage transaction for Chile to manage the country’s earthquake risks. On the date the Notes, the Republic of Chile and IBRD entered into an insurance agreement, under which IBRD will make payouts to Chile upon occurrence of an earthquake that fulfills certain conditions, and Chile will pay insurance premium which is linked with the interest payable under the Notes. The insurance arrangement allows Chile to mitigate the potentially disruptive economic effect of earthquakes (including resulting tsunamis) affecting Chile on its budget and to reduce any need for increases of debt or for transitory tax increases to address those economic effects. IBRD issued the Notes to support its obligation to make payouts to Chile under the insurance agreement upon occurrence of an earthquake.
Accordingly, one unusual feature of the Notes is that the outstanding principal amount may be reduced by the payout amounts if an earthquake occurs in Chile. The noteholders may lose all or a portion of the Notes principal.
The Notes were offered and sold only to professional investors including qualified institutional buyers as defined in Rule 144A under the United States Securities Act of 1933 and those professional investors who meet the requirement under the Insurance (Special Purpose Business) Rules (Cap. 41P of the Laws of Hong Kong). That essentially means that the Notes were not sold to the public or retail investors in Hong Kong due to the peculiar and risky nature of the Notes.
The interest of the Notes is payable on a monthly basis and the interest rate is linked to (a) index values published by the administrator of the secured overnight financing rate (SOFR) which currently is the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, (b) the funding margin which is of 0.04% per annum and (c) the applicable risk margin which is generally 4.75% per annum. The Alternative Reference Rates Committee convened by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York identified on 22 June 2017 the SOFR as the rate that represented best practice for use in certain new US dollar derivatives and other financial contracts. The SOFR is also a broad measure of the cost of borrowing cash overnight collateralised by US treasury securities.