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American Equity Resumes Debt Sale as Bonds Rebound

American Equity Investment Life Holding Co., the seller of fixed annuities, today resumed plans for a bond sale that was put on hold last month when yields on speculative grade debt jumped.

The offering was increased to $400 million from $250 million, the West Des Moines, Iowa-based insurer said today in a statement distributed by Business Wire.

Bond yields fell yesterday after Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke called for maintaining stimulus. Average yields on junk-rated corporate debt in the U.S. dropped to 6.92 percent yesterday, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch Index data. That compares with 7.15 percent on June 25, four days after the insurer pulled the deal, citing “market conditions” for bonds.

“We have the flexibility to be opportunistic about the timing” of an offering, Chairman D.J. Noble said June 21 when the sale was postponed.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) is leading the offering.

To contact the reporter on this story: Megan Hickey in New York at Mhickey18@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Kraut at dkraut2@bloomberg.net

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