S&P Cuts AAA Rating On Thousands Of Municipal Bonds

Tyler Durden's picture

The much awaited cut by S&P of thousands of municipal bonds following its August 5 downgrade of the US has arrived. Per Bloomberg: "The rating company assigned AA+ scores to securities in the $2.9 trillion municipal bond market including school- construction bonds in Irving, Texas; debt backed by a federal lease in Miami; and a bond series for multifamily housing in Oceanside, California. Olayinka Fadahunsi, an S&P spokesman, said he couldn’t provide a dollar figure on the affected debt. “It’s expected, but nobody is happy about it,” Bud Byrnes, chief executive officer of Encino, California-based RH Investment Corp., said in a telephone interview. “No one that I know thinks it was justified to cut the U.S. bonds to AA+. Once that happened, you knew that any prerefunded bonds or escrowed bonds would be downgraded too. It’s a domino effect.”" Well, Bud, if you really have so few acquaintances, we suggest you go out more. There are some fun bars on Ventura: give us a call for the low down. As for people who do go out more, here's one: "Chris Mier, a managing director at Loop Capital Markets LLC in Chicago who follows the municipal bond market, said the downgrades made sense, given the federal rating cut. “In order to keep the system logical and coherent, there are going to be a lot of downgrades,” Mier said in a conference call with reporters and clients." Matt Fabian, a managing director of Concord, Massachusetts- based Municipal Market Advisors, a financial research company, said in a telephone interview that he expected “hundreds and hundreds of municipal downgrades,” which may hurt investor confidence. “Treasuries may be able to shake off a real impact from the downgrade,” he said. “Munis, I’m less sure about." That's ok, while nobody has any idea what is coming, that won't stop 99.9% of those on Comcast's financial comedy channel from opining anyway.


The company said on July 21 that a U.S. downgrade based on a failure to come up with a “realistic and credible” plan to reduce the budget deficit would be the “least disruptive” scenario for municipal ratings. That’s because it would mean Congress avoided making significant cuts to the funding of municipal credits not directly linked to the federal government, S&P said.


Top-rated state and local governments wouldn’t automatically lose their top scores, the company said. It rates the general-obligation debt of nine states AAA. The country’s “decentralized governmental structure” calls for an independent review of state and local government credits, 3.9 percent of which have AAA ratings, S&P said in a report.


State and municipal governments that depend less on the national government for revenue and that manage their own books well enough to weather declines in federal funding may retain AAA ratings, S&P said. The company didn’t name such states or municipal governments in the report. 


Municipal issuance has fallen amid the U.S. debt-ceiling impasse. The slump and signs of a slowing economy helped drive tax-exempt yields to the lowest this year. Scheduled debt sales total about $2.8 billion this week, the slowest August week since 2003, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.


For the municipal market, “the key is supply and demand,” more than ratings downgrades, said Ed Reinoso, chief executive officer of Castleton Partners in New York, which manages about $250 million for individuals.


The S&P action itself “was almost cosmetic,” he said in a telephone interview. “It doesn’t seem to have much impact.”

Sure, just like the Fukushima explosion had no impact on the lift expectancy of those surrounding it back in March. Perhaps we should all check back with population in the immediate vicinity in a few years... And then do the same for debt issuers in the US.

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mayhem_korner's picture

Whoopsie!  Watch that first step, it's a long one...

IMA5U's picture

i guess that means they will be probed by all the municipalities also

mayhem_korner's picture

"Probed" smacks of violation with latex gloves...  Apt verb.

Ghordius's picture

shocked voice: "my goodness! what happened to your avatar?"

mayhem_korner's picture

As Yoda said to Obi-Wan, "there is another."

Another poster - combatsnoopy - has the same avatar.  He/she is senior to me in time at ZH, so I gave it up.

Manthong's picture

This was posted by Mactheknife last night.

I have discounted the Bilderberg stuff to a degree, but this looks like a big deal:


goldfish1's picture



"Even after discovering that the S&P debt calculations were off by $2 trillion, Sharma made the decision to go ahead with the unethical downgrade. This is a guy who was a key contributor at the 2009 Bilderberg Summit that organized 120 of the world's richest men and women to push for an end to the dollar as the global reserve currency."

In Fed We Trust's picture


1.28 minutes into this clip, Glen Beck spills the beans
And tells these Jews that "politics" is over.

He would never dare say that in America.

He goes to say that Americans were so scared by 911 they are willing to believe anything and that in the future they will be begging for more "truth"

Making references to 911 to the people who framed the job just shows you what a panza ass Glenn beck is.

I'm sure the Jews where laughing at him on the inside.

Take a look.

In Fed We Trust's picture


Why is George Soros Media Matters attacking Glen Beck?

In this amazing video Glen Beck explains the whole conspiracy in his own words!

The whole war between FOX and Soros is are fake drama.

Glen would never mention the Jewish media empire and banking empire.

Or that Soros is a Jew. Blaming one man, Soros helps conceal the identities of many more.

People like Glen Beck need to be beheaded.

ThatGuyEhler's picture

Don't post mobile video links...... find it on the normal youtube site and post that. 

In Fed We Trust's picture

Its all done from my iPhone?

In Fed We Trust's picture

I have reason to believe that Matt Drudge is conducting realtine polls
With his headlines on behalf of the NWO.

Besides all the sneaky files if loads, many times it polar headlines like this past weekend.

us down graded by S&p. Or click here to read about the navel seals who died , the ones that killed Osama.

Of course both stories are hosted by dynamic AP.
depending on what headline u choose first they can conduct a real time poll and decide what bullshit to feed the people next.

War on terror OR war on finance? You decide,

Soros has been pitching his "theory of Reflextivity " now for 20 years.

I can see it alive and well in the market place.

The oil market in 2008 was a perfect example.

So I have reason to believe that Matt Drudge is the "feedback mechanism " that Soros refers to in his theory.

Id fight Gandhi's picture

Call Meredith and s&p to congress for a dress down. How dare they point out the obvious!

hungarianboy's picture

Doesn't matter. Today it's FOMC. QE3 or TARP2. That's what matters.

Short covering.

OnTheWaterfront's picture

Send whats left of Seal Team 6 to there office

alexwest's picture

still in denial
good , market will go much lower


Pete15's picture

Lets see what kind of money printer Mr. Bernanke is 

hedgeless_horseman's picture

Bud Byrnes is a fucking douche bag, clearly, with ignorant acquaintances.

Ratscam's picture

Dealer Broadcast 09 Aug 2011 at 11:28:01 (GMT) Futures Margin Update: With effect on 11 August 2011 @ 1:00PM CET the initial and maintenance margin for Russell 2000 Mini Index(TF) will increase from 3,500 USD to 5,350 USD. The initial and maintenance margin for British Pound Sterling/Japanese Yen(SY) from increase from 297,388 JPY and 223,600 JPY to 408,975 JPY and 307,500 JPY respectively. Saxo Bank

Ratscam's picture

here come the margin increases 10-32%. Gold next?

Dealer Broadcast 09 Aug 2011 at 11:31:04 (GMT) Futures Margin Update: With effect on 11 August 2011 @ 1:00PM CET the initial and maintenance margin for NYBOT US Dollar Index(DX) will increase by 32%, NYBOT Orange Juice(OJ) by 21%, 30 day Federal Funds Future(ZQ) by 13% and Euro FX/Swiss Franc(NG) by 10%. Saxo Bank

66Sexy's picture

America... Land of the Junkies.. and Ben Bernake is the pick mack daddy long legs pusher-pimp.

MyKillK's picture

So how long before this sets off a stampede of Muni bankruptcies? 8 months? A year? Two years?

goldfish1's picture

a stampede of Muni bankruptcies?

8/1 Central Falls, Rhode Island

The smallest city in the smallest U.S. state made the filing as it grappled with an $80 million unfunded pension and retiree health benefit liability that is nearly quadruple its annual budget of $17 million.


Snidley Whipsnae's picture

Jesse has some interesting comments on the downgrade...

"So today [yesterday] we saw Treasuries rally sharply even on the longer end of the curve where the downgrade occurred. How about that! But it was perfectly understandable.

Why? Because the message was not about the quality of the Treasuries, which the market already knows much better than the bureaucratic paper pushers at S&P. Rather, the implications were about the outlook for the US economy. And that outlook is becoming increasingly dire. So Treasuries and gold were bought for safe haven status, and stocks and assets dependent on economic growth were sold off sharply in search of liquidity."


Excellent observations...

GlassHammer's picture

“the key is supply and demand,” more than ratings downgrades,"

-Ed Reinoso

He could have just said

"I could rate these municipal bonds damn near anything and it would not matter because the government has been funding the muni market."

Bailouts for state muni markets have been going strong for quite a while now. 

oobrien's picture

And yet the futures are up 150 points.

 I have no idea how this shit works.

I guess people have to put their money somewhere.


Id fight Gandhi's picture

Nobody does. Computers trade, fraud etc.

goldfish1's picture



the crime of obtaining money or some other benefit by deliberate deception

Snidley Whipsnae's picture

Pre market the Fed has told it's minions "We are warming up the GE Turbine powered printers and will be supplying all minions that do our bidding with mega bucks, so make sure futures are up, and make sure the word gets out pronto. If you incur losses today we will cover them, if you make bucks today, you can keep them."

semi-stealth QE, iows...

breezer1's picture

just listened to two canadian economic professors talk about how normal it is for markets to go up and down. said it was a great buying opportunity. don't worry , be happy. take advantage of the low rate extension that looked like a sure thing from the boc.

no wonder we are all in such a pickle. 

they went on to say that everything will be fine now because all the governments of the world are now going to work at fixing things and they won't let anything bad happen. 

i couldn't believe my ears. 

they sounded like teenage girls just before getting home at 4am after being gangbanged by the soccer team and snorting coke all night, rehersing just what to say to their parents. scaary...

Snidley Whipsnae's picture

"just listened to two canadian economic professors talk..."

Bernanko is an economics professor. We have been listening to him. How well has that worked out?

Uh... the takeaway is 'don't listen to economics proffs'... and only a few non Keynesian economists...The rest are in lock step headed toward the cliff edge.

disabledvet's picture

if Gold is your put option--precisely what is it a put option on? If it's stocks that's one thing. If it's on an entire nation's so called repayable debt that's another thing entirely. I'm still watching silver--

Snidley Whipsnae's picture

"if Gold is your put option--precisely what is it a put option on?"

Gold is a put option on a paradigm shift in the world financial system...but, a better definition is 'gold is insurance for a trip across troubled economic waters'.

But, since gold does not think for itself, it is reliant on the owner to made sound decisions once the trip across troubled waters is completed.

Put another way... a fool and his money are soon seperated...

proLiberty's picture

"“No one that I know thinks it was justified to cut the U.S. bonds to AA+."

And no one that I know thinks it is "sustainable" for the US to continue to increase spending faster than its economy is growing.  This just shows how careful you must be in choosing those you associate with.

earnulf's picture

All the Cheerleading for Optimism is roiling my stomach.    Everyone seems to be trying to rework the phrase "don't worry, Be Happy!".    I'd rather relax on my couch of Gold, drinking and eating from Silver vessels and confident in the power of lead.

Kina's picture

QE3, going to be really painful for the US to come down off its heroine.

BB will give them all a fix now, they will feel good, then get the shakes, sweat, vomit and go crazy when it begins to run out again.


The Fed is a pusher.

KowPie's picture

If I was mounted on a heroine I would be quite happy. I could agree with the shakes, sweat and crazy part but I don't think I would vomit on her, she probably wouldn't like it (hopefully).

Kina's picture

' economic professors talk about how normal it is for markets to go up and down. said it was a great buying opportunity.'


What do economists know about trading and stock markets, they scarcely know anything useful about economies. THese guys should have their qualificatioins removed if they say its safe to play this market with the global economy the way it is.

Economist is another name for government shill, or freelance hoe.


the not so mighty maximiza's picture

112 trillion is the real depth of the hole.

PaperBugsBurn's picture

Paper bugs burn!!!

Illuminati toilet paper, bitchez!!!

PulauHantu29's picture

The Fed has forced interest rates artifically too low so this market is seriously broken. With inflation running somewhere around 6% to 8%, the ZIRP policy is causing severe distortions which obviously caused this crash...S&P is the messenger, not the cause.


The Bernank is boxed into the corner but Rogoff is probably right that Ben and Timmy need more printing at this point...short term. If leadership does not step up and announce a solid long term plan we may be in for more serious difficulties....and $5,000 gold.


BTW, when does Barry hand the Medal of Freedom to Meredith Whitney? She has been spot on 100%.

slackrabbit's picture

I love it!

Finally Change I Can Believe In!

That is, allot of people changing their underwear.

All right you pirates, time for us all to play with our 'peices of eight'. Its all gold lads' gold!

chinawholesaler's picture

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