HCA Holdings Issues $1 Billion of Bonds for Shareholder Payment

Dec. 3 (Bloomberg) -- HCA Holdings Inc., the biggest U.S. for-profit hospital operator, sold $1 billion of bonds to make a distribution to stockholders.

The company issued the 6.25 percent debt due February 2021 to yield 462 basis points more than similar-maturity Treasuries, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Proceeds will also be used to pay certain option holders, the Nashville, Tennessee-based company said today in a filing. HCA plans to pay a special cash dividend of $2 per share by Dec. 31, HCA said today in a statement distributed by Business Wire.

The hospital chain previously issued securities in October, selling $1.25 billion each of 4.75 percent senior secured notes at a relative yield of 304 basis points and 5.875 percent, senior unsecured debt at a spread of 417 basis points, Bloomberg data show. The bonds mature in May 2023 and proceeds were to be used to repay a term loan and to pay a stockholder dividend.

The new bonds are rated B3 by Moody’s Investors Service and an equivalent B- by Fitch Ratings, the ratings companies said today in separate reports.

Payouts this year are subject to a 15 percent U.S. levy that may rise to as high as 43.4 percent if lawmakers allow $600 billion of scheduled tax increases and spending cuts to take effect in 2013.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sarika Gangar in New York at sgangar@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alan Goldstein at agoldstein5@bloomberg.net