KBRA Assigns Preliminary Ratings to First Investors Auto Owner Trust 2020-1

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Kroll Bond Rating Agency (KBRA) assigns preliminary ratings to six classes of notes issued by First Investors Auto Owner Trust 2020-1 (FIAOT 2020-1), an auto loan ABS transaction.

FIAOT 2020-1 will issue six classes of notes totaling $185.89 million. The transaction includes a three-month prefunding feature that allows up to $41 million or 22% of the collateral pool to be funded after closing. The ratings reflect the initial credit enhancement levels of 31.35% for the Class A notes, 24.36% for the Class B notes, 14.86% for the Class C notes, 7.86% for the Class D notes, 4.36% for the Class E notes, and 1.50% for the Class F notes. Credit enhancement consists of overcollateralization, subordination of junior notes, cash reserves and excess spread. This transaction is First Investors’ first securitization in 2020 and its 27th securitization since 2002.

First Investors is an experienced and capable originator and servicer of subprime auto loans. The company was founded over 30 years ago and has benefitted from a stable and experienced management team, which has managed its business through several economic cycles.

KBRA applied its Global Auto Loan ABS Rating methodology and Global Structured Finance Counterparty Methodology as part of its analysis of the transaction’s underlying collateral pool, the proposed capital structure and First Investors’ historical static pool data. KBRA also conducted an operational assessment on the originator and servicer, as well as a review of the transaction’s legal structure and transaction documents. KBRA will also review the operative agreements and legal opinions for the transaction prior to closing.

To access ratings, reports and disclosures, click here.

Ratings Assigned: First Investors Auto Owner Trust 2020-1




Principal Balance


AAA (sf)



AA+ (sf)



A (sf)



BBB (sf)



BB (sf)



B (sf)


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KBRA is a full-service credit rating agency registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission as an NRSRO. In addition, KBRA is designated as a designated rating organization by the Ontario Securities Commission for issuers of asset-backed securities to file a short form prospectus or shelf prospectus. KBRA is also recognized by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners as a Credit Rating Provider, and is a certified Credit Rating Agency (CRA) by the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA). Kroll Bond Rating Agency Europe Limited is registered with ESMA as a CRA.


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