(Bloomberg) -- Almost all the stars are aligned for private credit, thanks to factors including low defaults, limited refinancing activity and the absence of a recession, said Benoît Durteste, chief executive officer of Intermediate Capital Group Plc.

“It’s double-digit returns for senior debt right now — I’ve never seen that in my career,” the London-headquartered alternative asset manager’s CEO told Bloomberg Television’s Dani Burger at the IPEM private equity conference in Paris.

Durteste pushed back on a prediction by UBS Group AG strategists in June that defaults in the private credit market would peak at 9% to 10% in the first half of 2024.

“Not at all,” he said. “There’s no history of that, there’s no experience of that.” The average default rate is 2% or lower, and without a severe recession, debt portfolios wouldn’t be so impacted, he said.

On the buyout side, companies in the services sector remain compelling, while health-care firms may be more difficult but some areas are still attractive, Durteste said. There is renewed appetite for industrials, which had been out of favor, he added.

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Founded in 1989, ICG has more than 500 employees in offices across 16 countries, according to its website. The firm has $82.1 billion in assets under management as of June 30.

--With assistance from Dani Burger.

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