Bloomberg News

RBC Hires Junk Trader Steele Amid U.S. Debt Banking Expansion

June 06, 2012

Royal Bank of Canada, the country’s largest bank by assets, hired Gregory Steele to trade high-yield bonds in the U.S. as the lender captures a greater share of business managing debt sales.

Steele joined the bank’s investment-banking unit in New York two weeks ago from Macquarie Capital USA Inc. Sanam Alaghband, an RBC Capital Markets spokeswoman, confirmed the hire. He previously worked at Deutsche Bank AG for the 10 years ending in 2009.

RBC’s investment-banking unit was one of the firms that expanded its U.S. fixed-income teams starting in 2009 as the biggest banks retreated from trading amid the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. It’s the 10th most-active underwriter of speculative-grade debt in the U.S. this year, up from 13th place for the previous two years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

“This is the highest our league table ranking has been in U.S. high yield,” said Mike Meyer, global head of credit trading, in a statement.

Steele will trade bonds from industrial, forestry, paper and packaging, and consumer-product companies, Alaghband said.

High-yield bonds, rated below Baa3 by Moody’s Investors Service and lower than BBB- by Standard & Poor’s, have gained 4 percent this year, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch index data. They have declined 2.1 percent since April as concern mounts that Greece will exit Europe’s common currency, disrupting the financial system.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lisa Abramowicz in New York at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alan Goldstein at

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