For an issuer to borrow $100M, the floating rate is typically lower than the fixed rate that's available from a regular bond issue.
Some “fixed” bond issuers actually want a floating interest cost, which is typically cheaper. IRS is a simpler route than the VRDO with the remarketing agent and letter of credit.
“Major issuers evaluate the swap market and the bond market side by side” as 2 alternatives.
Cast of characters
* issuer, like IBM
* swap provider, like GS
* investor, like grandma.