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CIT Group Sells $3 Billion Bonds to Pay Back Outstanding Debt

CIT Group Inc., the small-business lender that exited bankruptcy two years ago, sold $3 billion of bonds to pay back debt.

The company sold $1.75 billion of 4.25 percent, five-year notes to yield 364 basis points more than similar-maturity Treasuries and $1.25 billion of 5 percent, 10-year bonds at a relative yield of 350 basis points, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Proceeds will be used for general corporate purposes and to refinance the company’s 7 percent so-called series C notes due in 2016 and 2017, according to a person familiar with the transaction, who asked not to be identified because the terms are private.

Bank of America Corp., Deutsche Bank AG, Goldman Sachs Group Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Credit Agricole SA managed the sale for the New York-based company run by John Thain, Bloomberg data show.

CIT, which emerged from bankruptcy in December 2009, sold $2 billion of bonds in May with proceeds also used to refinance the series C notes. As part of the issue, the company sold $1.25 billion of 5 percent, five-year bonds, which traded at 104.5 cents on the dollar to yield 3.96 percent yesterday, according to Trace, the bond-price reporting system of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

Standard & Poor’s boosted the firm’s rating to BB- on March 9, three levels below investment grade.

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