Illinois Seeks To Issue $8.75 Billion Bond To Pay Overdue Bills As Muni Issuance Market On Verge Of Shutdown

Tyler Durden's picture

While Illinois' desire to finally tackle its unsustainable fiscal situation is admirable, the process is starting to disclose some very stinky rot below the surface. On the heels of the recent hike in the corporate tax rate, today Bloomberg reports that governor Pat Quinn is asking lawmakers to authorize an $8.75 billion bond sale. The use of proceeds? To pay $6 billion in backlogged bills: read invoices that the state has been unable to pay so far due to what technically should be classified as a liquidity crunch, and non-technically as complete lack of cash. Luckily, entities that are owed money by the state at least have a chance to get paid. Earlier, state House of Representatives defeated a borrowing bill that was designed to
eliminate the pile of invoices that is at least five months old. The state's payment delinquency also includes pension funds: local underfunded pensions are owed almost $4 billion in payments by the state. In the meantime, Chicago CDS dropped on the news of the tax hike, declining from 28 bps to 300 yesterday, the lowest since December 9. Whether this means that the state will be able to find sufficiently stupid investors whose capital will go to nothing besides funding overdue invoices, is a totally separate matter however. Perhaps a good indication of the ravenous appetite for muni debt (in addition to the fresh 52 week low in virtually every single muni bond fund), is that the New Jersey agency has shrank the size of a proposed $1.2 billion refinancing offering by roughly 40% and hiked yields on the sale as it struggled to market bonds to investors on Thursday. As the secondary muni market is plunging, the primary market for issuance is on the verge of shutting down completely. Cue in QE3.

From Bloomberg:

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn will ask lawmakers next month to authorize an $8.75 billion bond sale to pay $6 billion in backlogged bills.

The state House of Representatives defeated a borrowing bill in the final hours of the legislative session Tuesday that was designed to eliminate the pile of invoices that is at least five months old.

It was part of a package of measures that included a 67 percent increase in the personal income tax aimed at plugging a $13 billion budget hole amid the state’s worst financial crisis. Legislators are to return to Springfield next month.

“We still anticipate getting the debt restructuring completed,” Kelly Kraft, a Quinn spokeswoman, said in a telephone interview today. “Once the revenue comes in, it will begin to bring in more money to address our backlog.”

Illinois and other U.S. states confront deficits totaling $140 billion in the next fiscal year, according to a Dec. 16 report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a Washington research group.

“You can’t have an economy that will grow if you tax and put a burden on those who will risk their capital that will in turn create the job,” he said in a speech to the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s annual legislative conference in Austin. “It’s just that simple.”

The criticism wasn’t shared by investors, who have looked with concern at the accumulation of bills and almost $4 billion in missed payments to underfunded pensions.

That's the problem. Unfortunately, the anticipated solution is not pretty. From Dow Jones:

A New Jersey agency shrank the size of a $1.2 billion refinancing offering by roughly 40% and hiked yields on the sale as it struggled to market the bonds to institutional investors Thursday.

A term sheet with preliminary pricing for the deal showed the agency--the New Jersey Economic Development Authority--sliced the size of an originally $1.2 billion sale to roughly $712 million Thursday.

Meanwhile, the yield on the longest maturity--a $78 million tranche maturing in 2024 with a 5.25% coupon--offered a 5.37% yield. That's 39 basis points higher than the yield offered on a similar maturity on Tuesday, the first day the bonds were sold to individual investors.

The move comes as the EDA sale appeared to have mediocre demand from individual investors Tuesday and Wednesday.

Andy Pratt, spokesman for state Treasurer Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff, said individuals ordered a total of less than $300 million of the bonds on those two days.

The bonds being refinanced are school construction bonds, backed by anticipated contract payments from the state, which are subject to legislative appropriation. Despite Gov. Chris Christie's recent budget cutting, New Jersey still faces budget challenges, and its pension is still significantly underfunded, with a 62% funded ratio as of June 2009, according to Moody's Investors Service.

Time to roll out Bill Gross for another pep talk?

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goldmiddelfinger's picture

It'll take a memorial service as pep rally and blue t-shirtss to get me in. ChicagoLand yowzir !

Red Neck Repugnicant's picture

Are you guys aware that Chicago sold 36,000 of its parking meters to Abu Dhabi in 2008 for $1.15B?

Shortly after the transaction, Abu Dhabi raises parking meters fees and eliminated free parking on Sundays, holidays and festivals.  A study done a year later concluded that the lost parking meter revenue to Chicago was calculated incorrectly, and Abu Dhabi bought the 36,000 meters for significantly less than their value.  lol

Just another example of how America is being sold off piece by piece to fund reckless deficits.

I bet the Statue of Liberty would fetch quite a bit on Ebay. 

trav7777's picture

You should look at Argentina...this is our destination.

And you ought to be less partisan in your presentation, as the Chicago and Illinois political ruling class is DIVERSITY and Democrap to the core.  And rotten.

Red Neck Repugnicant's picture

No shit, yellow face. 

There was nothing partisan in my comment. I think your jaundice of the face is clouding your cognition. 

EscapeKey's picture

What the fxxx, have we broken RedNeck? What happened to the ever-jolly perma-bullish ZH poster?

earnyermoney's picture

Corrupt governments confiscating your income can change one's outlook.

Hephasteus's picture

Zerohedge. It's where coolaide drunks go to die. If afghanistan had a college. We'd be it.

trav7777's picture

"Faux News" isn't partisan?

You PMSing?

Calmyourself's picture

 Don't anger it!  Do you wish to be accused of incivility?  In your face partisan says disregard what your eyes tell you, listen to me do what your told typical statist.

RNR = dull tool

Freddie's picture

Well even Fox News is fawning over the second coming of the kenyan jesus.  The other networks have made him into Jesus, Gaia, MLK, JFK, Mother Theresa, Budda, Mohammed (not a stretch there), Einstein, Vishnu, and Lincoln.

He heals the sick during funeral nurnberg rallies.  I dumped TV after he was elected in the bankster's 2008 late summer Soros crash coup.  Every channel now bows to the diety like the USSR did to Stalin.

Buzz Fuzzel's picture

You should look at Venezuela . . . this is our destination, duly elected dictator and all.

AnAnonymous's picture

I see nothing new here. Infrastructures have always been better at generating profits when funded by someone else.

Infrastructure funded by public money and later sold to private interests at a discount is nothing new.

Besides, in the US, the ambiant idea is that tyranny is much acceptable if it performs on private basis than on public basis.

I noticed the new owner of the park raised fees and stuff. US citizens would not have born it if done by a public owner. So the public could not have reached the same gross as a private owner.

malikai's picture

Infrastructures have always been better at generating profits when funded by someone else.

I believe the original intention of having the parking meters was to raise sustainable public funds. Now the parking meter funds go to a non-public recipient. Well, it's no surprise to me; Chicago is one of the most corrupt cities on earth. Did you see what emperor Daley did to Meigs Field? He could have ended up killing people directly with that move. It also cost the taxpayers millions in fines from the FAA, yet the plebs in Chicago give not a shit.

Freddie's picture

Most of are aware that corrupt liberal union states will keep looting taxpayers and the state until the money is gone and everything that can be sold - is sold.  Illinois is a lot like Zimbabwe and Mugabe 2 hussein came from Chicago.  Hope & Change.  No one in their right mind will by shit Illinois bonds.  The Feds will or some investment banks using Fed money.

Mach1513's picture

Interest was supposed to help fund annual budget. Instead Daley used all of it to close one years budget gap. Guess which banksters structured this innovation?


trav7777's picture

My guess is on whoever hired Daley after that

Freddie's picture

How did Daley end up with $7.7 million in The JP Morgue stock?

nmewn's picture ones supposed to know about that.

NOTW777's picture

more of the obama recovery. wheres ben to tout this improvement

goldmiddelfinger's picture

Ben's shredding the confetti

traderjoe's picture

I love that on ZH the trolls have their own trolls...

goldmiddelfinger's picture

I thought your net access was blocked by the boss

traderjoe's picture

Mom put a net monitor on the basement computer - I get an hour a day to post and read. 51 minutes to go...

Spalding_Smailes's picture

He's on CNBC - Tyler should have a clip later. 3-4% GDP per uncle ben ....

Sudden Debt's picture

With real inflation over 12% it's kind of a disappointment. I expected a 9 to 10% growth.

traderjoe's picture

Too bad Harry's housewares (read: dildo) business is not located there. Record Q4 revenues - think of all the sales and business taxes it would generate for IL!

They passed a 66% income tax increase in the dead of the night, before the new legislature was seated, with no spending cuts (only a freeze). Yea, that's good governance... /s

goldmiddelfinger's picture

IL now has highest corporate tax rate in the world (except for Venezula)

Spalding_Smailes's picture

They told us the lotto & highway toll tax would pay for everything, schools ect, ect, ect, ...

Misean's picture

Clearly Illinois needs a POLL tax as well then...

Bill Lumbergh's picture

You mean local sales tax on Apple products alone will not solve their deficit...Harry please talk with Steve to ratchet up the product lineup so consumers can charge up more debt and thus more sales tax.

traderjoe's picture

And they sold their parking meters for some quick cash...what happened to that?

The looting is nearly complete...

Spalding_Smailes's picture

The parking meters ? The billion plus is gone I think .. ? 

Daley tried selling midway airport before the crash ...

True story, I ran into jesse jackass jr. and asked him about the credit bubble in late 06' he looked me in the eye and turned around and left the room, never said a word ....

malikai's picture

Daley tried selling midway airport before the crash ...

Before or after he bulldozed it?

Spalding_Smailes's picture

That was meigs field on the water ( private planes ). He blowtorched that place.

trav7777's picture

obviously, he had some Olympic committee and bigwig property developers that wanted that land for cheap

malikai's picture

The story around the pilot campfire is that his wife didn't like the airport so close to her lake shore drive condo.

malikai's picture

Right, I misread that and thought you meant Meigs. Who was he supposed to sell midway to?

Bill Lumbergh's picture

I grew up in the northern suburbs of Chicago and while I miss some aspects I certainly do not miss the weather nor additional taxes.

Spalding_Smailes's picture

I live in cook. The taxes would make attila the hun blush' ...

Bill Lumbergh's picture

I hear a pack of cigs costs almost $10 there...if that is not enough to make someone stop smoking I do not know what else would achieve that objective short of coughing up a lung.

Spalding_Smailes's picture

Its brutal. I think its $8.50 - (cigs) you sound like my pops !!!


They add a buck a year in tax , lol'''

malikai's picture

I'm from Dupage. I love the skyline and city life but hate Crook County's taxes, politics, and unwarranted self importance.

Logans_Run's picture

Harry sells dildos? I thought he just was one?

traderjoe's picture

Not a mutually exclusive proposition.

countryboy42's picture

News to me as well. I thought he sold used condoms.

vote_libertarian_party's picture

I always here about how states have to have balanced budgets....isn't this NOT a balanced budget?


Oh, I forgot, rules/laws are only for the little people.

hedgeless_horseman's picture

As the secondary muni market is plunging, the primary market for issuance is on the verge of shutting down completely.

This news gives me the heebie jeebies*.


*If "heebie jeebies" happens to represent some obscure religious slander, I do not apologise.

unwashedmass's picture


i agree, are we allowed to say the this market is now completely freaking us out?

the stock market skyrocketing. muni bonds about to die a very painful death...JPM trying to destroy gold/silver to keep the myth of "no inflation" ... and their own balance sheet alive....


central planning about implode....

complete freak out.

scatterbrains's picture

is it possible the Auzzies are dumping positions to raise cash for infastructure rebuild ?