Lebanon this week launched a $1bn two-tranche bond: $700mn at 6.65% due in 2024, and $300mn at 7% due in 2031. Both the yields and the fact that the bond was 128% oversubscribed are impressive given that the country is rated well inside ‘junk’ territory by ratings agencies. Moody’s rates Lebanon B2, five notches below investment grade, S&P B- (-6) and Fitch ‘B’ (-5).

Yields are just shy of those obtained in November (6.25% for nine years; 6.65% for 13...