Covered warrants issued on HK Land

BARCLAYS de Zoete Wedd has issued two-year covered warrants on Hongkong Land, the second issue of derivatives in a week and the fourth this year.

The successful issue of the warrants marks the third time Hongkong Land shares have been the subject of a derivative issue. Other issues have come from Nan Fung and Sun Hung Kai Securities.

The merchant bank issued 50 million call warrants on Hongkong Land at $2.80 each with an at-the-money strike price of $14.10. Expiry is on February 24, 1995.

This places the issue on a 19.9 per cent premium and a gearing of 5.04, where the implied volatility has been raised to 41.6 per cent.

A spokesman for the merchant bank said: ''The issue has been well received and it shows there is a growing appetite for these instruments even in uncertain market conditions.'' On Wednesday, Robert Fleming issued 25 million one-for-one call warrants on electricity utility China Light and Power.

These two-year warrants went for $7.55 each with a strike price of $36. This placed the premium at 21 per cent and the gearing at 4.76 times. The expiry date is February 23, 1995.

The other issues this month have been on Cheung Kong (Holdings) and HSBC, both of which were completed by Robert Fleming.

In the Cheung Kong issue, 40 million warrants were issued with 18-month lives at $3.55 each with a strike price of $20.50, placing them on a 17 per cent premium and 5.7 times gearing.

The HSBC issue involved 25 million warrants, with two-year lives, at 111.6 pence and a conversion price of 519 pence. This placed them on a premium of 21.5 per cent and a gearing of 4.65.

The Hongkong stock exchange is currently investigating its rules linked to covered warrant issues that are intended to list on the exchange.

The exchange expects to report back on its findings following a consultation with practitioners by the end of the second half of the year.

The exchange is considering tightening up the regulations surrounding the issue of these derivatives including demands for higher capital adequacy requirements of the issuer and more cover at the time of issue.