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In preparation for stormier market conditions, the Bank of Canada is opening up its backstop for the corporate bond market to fund managers.

Starting Oct. 20, the central bank will allow buy-side firms, such as portfolio managers and pension funds, to participate in its corporate bond purchase program (CBPP).

The CBPP was launched in May to support liquidity in the corporate debt market in the face of Covid-19.

The BoC said that the program is “currently functioning well,” but that it’s amending the terms of the CBPP to “ensure the program can continue to function as an effective backstop should market conditions deteriorate.”

Buy-side firms will be able to offer bonds into the program via primary dealers.

“Only the Bank of Canada, CanDeal and the designated [dealer] through which the participant settles any successful tender will know the identity of the buy-side participant,” the central bank said.