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Fifth Street Finance CEO optimistic fiscal Q3 will see deal rebound

Sponsoredloan volume during Fifth StreetFinance Corp.'s fiscal second quarter continued a decline from2015, resulting in the weakest quarter for the middle market in six years, CEOTodd Owens said May 10.

Sponsoredloan issuances were down 45% from the quarter ending Dec. 31, 2015, and down31% compared to the prior-year quarter, Owens said during a conference call todiscuss earnings.

Leveragedbuyouts drove much of the deal volume, and very few refinancings occurred, hesaid. Contributing to the depressed business environment were volatility inenergy, commodities and credit markets, slowing global growth and an uncertaineconomic outlook, Owens said.

"Manyof our private equity sponsors took a wait-and-see approach in the quartergiven the lack of quality deals and lofty valuations," the CEO said.

Followinga very slow January and February, business did pick up in March, and FifthStreet Finance management is optimistic about deal flow returning to normallevels in the fiscal third quarter, Owens said.