The ICMA Primary Market Certificate (PMC) is an essential qualification for those with an interest or involvement in the debt primary markets.
The course examines the entire life cycle of bond issuance, from considering the financing choices through to the closing of transactions in the marketplace. While the training examines the theoretical principles underpinning the markets and the instruments and financing techniques that are available, emphasis is placed on interpreting and using that knowledge in practical case studies. Candidates who gain this qualification will have all the requisite tools to add value to their company’s activities in the primary markets.
By completing this course you will be able to:
- Understand what is involved with syndication and origination
- Review pricing decisions and launch requirements
- Assess current liability management techniques, their applicability and outcomes
- Explore events of default, debt ranking and covenants
The course places emphasis on current market practice and this is reflected in the delivery, by a combination of ICMA trainers and key market professionals including senior representatives from renowned organisations within the Debt Capital Markets.
Who should attend?
The exam consists of 50 multiple choice questions of which candidates must answer a minimum of 30 questions, or 60%, correctly in order to pass.
If you’re taking the classroom-based course, review sessions will be held prior to the exam to help candidates prepare for the assessment and assist with course content.
If you’re taking the online or livestreamed course you have six months in which to study the material, book and complete an online, fully invigilated exam. The exam is hosted on our online learning platform and invigilated by a live proctor via the camera and microphone on your computer. This allows you to choose a time and place of your convenience to take the exam, while guaranteeing secure exam conditions.
Prior to the exam, you will need to login with the proctor to check that your chosen exam equipment and space is adequate for the exam - you will receive further guidance when you register for the course.
Certification and Programme Recognition
This course has been accredited by the CPD® Certification Service and approved by the Securities & Futures Commission of Hong Kong for Continuous Professional Training (CPT).
ICMA recommends that 50 learning hours can be associated with this course, based on attended/undertaken hours of study required to successfully complete the learning outcomes.
The course is certified by ICMA and the ICMA Centre, Henley Business School, University of Reading. A Certificate of Attainment will be awarded to those who successfully pass the final exam of this course – see Assessment section for more details.
Please note that your course certificate of attendance or completion should be sufficient to satisfy any professional development requirements – if you require further evidence, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The PMC syllabus is organised around key areas, broken down into subtopics delivered by the course director and guest speakers. The programme concludes with the PMC exam:
- Sources of Finance
Cost of equity and debt
Weighted Average Cost Of Capital
Purpose of funding
- Use of Proceeds / Borrowers
Loans v. bonds
Corporates – IG / High Yield
SSAs – Sovereigns / Supranationals / Agencies
FIs - Capital adequacy / Basel 3
Minimum capital and buffers Leverage Ratio / LCR & NSFR
Common equity Tier 1 / Additional Tier 1 / Tier 2
- Credit Overview
Credit Ratings Overview
Basic Corporate Credit Analysis
Credit rating process
Credit Rating Agencies various approaches
Calibrating the business profile
Assessing the financial risk profile
- Investment Grade Markets
Introduction to the IG market
Sovereign case studies
- High Yield / Sub-IG
Introduction to HY / non-IG, understanding the difference
Review of Covenants
- Bond Types
Domestic, Foreign & Eurobond
Development of the cross-border market
Public or private
Floating Rate Notes / Fixed Rate
Medium Term Notes
- Investor Protection
Events of Default
Hybrid Capital / Debt / Equity Continuum
Tax Gross Up / Redemption
- Selling Restrictions & US Regs
10b 5 Due Diligence
TEFRA C & D
- Legal & Documentation
Overview of New Issue timetable
Underwriting risk - reps & warranties, DD, Legal opinions, Comfort letters, Conditions precedent, Force Majeure
Product Governance (MiFIDII/IR)
Obligations for Manufacturers & Distributers
ICMA 1 & ICMA 2
The Due Diligence process
EEA Prospectus Regulation/Directive
Disclosure & listing - Who discloses and what? / Relevant facts? / Why list?
Investment risk - Events of default / Cross default / Tax gross up & call / Negative pledge / Event risk covenant
The Collateral Pool
Role of Seller, Servicer and SPV
Credit Cards & other types of asset-backed
Securitisation since the crisis
EU Regulation of asset-backed
ECB Loan Level Initiative
Capital Markets Union (CMU) and the STS initiative
Historical performance data
- Covered Bonds
Definitions / Key features
Types of covered bonds
Covered bond ratings
EU Covered Bond Directive / Developing a harmonised EU framework
Recent structural developments
- Hybrid Capital
Uses and benefits
More Capital of higher quality
Components of capital structure
AT1 and T2 under Basel 3
BRRD and the ‘Bail in’ regime
- Liability Management
- Deal Process
- Documentation & Closing
Confirmation to Managers
Selling Group Agreement
Trustee / Fiscal agent
- Clearing & Settlement
Introduction to CSDs and ICSDs
Range of securities and currencies
Functions of the ICSDs
New Issues Acceptance
New Issues Distribution / Syndicated / Non-Syndicated
Role of the Common Depository
Eurosystem Collateral Eligibility
- Residual Regulation
ICMA courses are delivered via video conferencing accessed on our digital learning platform, using the most effective pedagogical approaches and incorporating interactive functions like virtual breakout rooms.
The PMC live sessions are delivered over the course of five weeks, with two sessions of 3.5 hours every week. You will be given access to the course materials before the live sessions, and will have access to those for a total of six months. During these six months you will have the option to keep working through the course materials at your own pace. Please note to ensure you book and take the exam within these six months.
8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 17, 22, 23, 24, 29 June
14, 15, 16, 21, 22, 23, 28, 29, 30 November and 5 December
Livestreamed course fees
ICMA Members: EUR 3,450 + VAT (if applicable)
Non Members: EUR 4,490 + VAT (if applicable)
For security reasons, delegates who have not registered in advance will not be admitted to the live sessions.
- All payments must be made in Euro.
- Invoices for single registrations are subject to an additional Euro 50 to cover administration costs*. No administration fee applies for invoices covering two or more registrations.
*Administration costs cover the provision of supporting documents, which are often requested along with the invoice, to become an approved supplier.
Should you have any queries, please contact email@example.com.