Wall Street's biggest firms can't get a break in the bondbusiness.

With trading profits dwindling, more dealers than ever are fightingfor assignments managing U.S. corporate-bond sales, one of the fewbright spots in fixed income. Companies from the most-creditworthyto the most-indebted have been selling trillions of dollars ofdebt, locking in record-low borrowing costs ahead of theanticipated rise in interest rates.

The increased competition is bad for JPMorgan Chase & Co.,Bank of America Corp., Citigroup Inc., Goldman Sachs Group Inc.,and Barclays Plc because the top five banks won the smallest shareof the assignments this year for any comparable timeframe,according to data compiled by Bloomberg. A record 144 underwritersfor the period have split an estimated $4.2 billion of fees on U.S.sales, the data show.

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