State of Connecticut Municipal Bond Study Essay

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State of Connecticut Municipal SWAP Case Study An Analysis and Recommendation of Synthetic Fixed Rate Derivatives State of Connecticut Municipal Swap Case Study: An Analysis and Recommendation of Synthetic Fixed Rate Derivatives Dear Mr. Benson R. Cohn, We, the State of Connecticut, have typically financed the long-term capital needs of the State through tax-deductible General Obligation bonds. This allowed us to achieve a lower costof-debt than similar taxable bonds. In stark contrast to the fixed-rate long-term debt financing, short term municipal financing for our State was often achieved through innovative methods developed by Wall Street. These new funding options, commonly referred to as Variable-Rate Demand Obligations (“VRDO’s”),…show more content…
Even though these products are issued as long-term securities, they have many of the same features as traditional short-term ones. These debt products are both callable and puttable which gives the issuer as well as the investor flexibility. The call feature allows the issuer to buy back the bond. For issuers who are not sure how long they will need funds, they can get out of the agreement by calling the bond. Same goes for the investor; they can exercise the put option and receive their money back. In order to make these products more liquid, investment banks are used as remarketing agents. These agents resell the bonds at new rates to other investors. However, there is a cap on how high the rates on the bonds can be reissued at in order to limit the coupon payments. These variable rate debts also track the JJ Kenny index. The JJ Kenny index is an index similar to the S&P 500 but for municipal bonds. Also, a synthetic fixed rate debt can be created from combining a variable rate debt and a SWAP. Given the two proposals, the state is faced with three forms of debt. The first form is a fixed rate option that would provide the state with 20 year serial issued bonds with fixed

payments for the duration of the bond and callable after ten years.

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