The tax-exempt market declined for the fifth consecutive trading day, as this week’s supply is far more than demand.
Deals in the primary market are getting done only by taking price cuts.
“The market is generally weaker,” a New York trader said. “We are seeing cuts today across the board with continued supply coming to market. But I think that was expected.”
The Maryland general obligation deal is getting done, but at a price, he said. “There are concessions definitely to where the Municipal Market Data has been and historical spreads for Maryland.”
“The Maryland pricing will set the tone for the rest of the day,” a second New York trader said Wednesday morning. “Everyone is waiting around.”
Munis were weaker Wednesday, according to MMD. Yields inside two years were steady while the three- to 14-year yields jumped five basis points. The 15- and 16-year yields spiked four and three basis points while yields outside 17 years rose up to two basis points across the curve.
On Wednesday, the two-year yield ended flat at 0.26%, its record low first registered by MMD on Feb. 16. The 10-year yield jumped five basis points to 2.03%, the first time it has closed above 2.00% since Dec. 7. The 30-year yield rose one basis point to 3.30%.
Treasuries were weaker Wednesday. The two-year yield jumped two basis points to 0.31%. The benchmark 10-year yield increased three basis points to 1.98% while the 30-year yield rose four basis points to 3.12%.
In the primary market, Siebert Brandford Shank & Co. priced $333 million of Detroit School District school building and site improvement refunding bonds. The school system itself is junk-rated, but the bonds are rated Aa2 by Moody’s Investors Service and AA-minus by Standard & Poor’s based on its participation in the Michigan School Bond Qualification and Loan Program.
Yields ranged from 0.89% with a 3% coupon in 2013 to 4.23% with a 5% coupon in 2033. The bonds are callable at par in 2022.
Citi priced $300 million of San Diego Community College District refunding GOs, rated Aa1 by Moody’s and AA-plus by Standard & Poor’s. The deal was expected to come Thursday. Prices were not yet available.
In the competitive market, Maryland auctioned $680.2 million of GOs in two offerings, rated triple-A.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch won the bid for $543.9 million of state and local facilities loan GO bonds. Yields ranged from 0.47% with a 5% coupon in 2015 to 3.05% with a 3% coupon in 2027. Credits maturing between 2019 and 2022, and in 2024 and 2025 were sold but not available. The bonds are callable at par in 2022.
Bank of America Merrill also won the bid for $136.3 million of state and local facilities GO refunding bonds. The bonds yielded 0.58% with a 4% coupon in 2016, 1.09% with a 4% coupon in 2018, and 1.93% with a 4% coupon in 2021. Credits maturing in 2022 were sold but not available.
The competitive pricing comes after a $57.1 million negotiated deal that was priced earlier in the week by Bank of America. The spread difference between bonds priced Monday and bonds priced Wednesday shows the extent of price cuts taken so far this week.
Bonds maturing in 2016 with a 5% coupon yielded 0.58% on Wednesday, compared to 0.51% on Monday. Credits maturing in 2018 with a 5% coupon yielded 1.09% on Wednesday, compared to 0.99% on Monday.
Spreads on the long end of the curve are even wider.
On Wednesday, bonds maturing in 2026 with a 3% coupon yielded 3.00%, 69 basis points higher than a bond issued Monday with the same maturity and coupon, which yielded 2.31%.
New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority issued $400 million of floating-rate tender notes in four pricings, rated A2 by Moody’s and A by Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch won the bid for $250 million of fixed-rate revenue bonds.
Yields ranged from 2.13% with a 5% coupon in 2019 to 3.88% with a 4% coupon in 2032. Credits maturing between 2012 and 2018, in 2025, in 2028, and between 2033 and 2039 were sold but not available. The bonds are callable at par in 2022.
Bank of America also won the bid for one of the $50 million deals. The bonds were priced 14 basis points above the SIFMA index and mature in 2040. The bonds are callable at par in Nov. 2012.
JPMorgan won the bid for the remaining two $50 million deals. On the first deal, the bonds were priced 19 basis points above the SIFMA index and are callable at par in Nov. 2013. On the second deal, the bonds were priced 39 basis points above the SIFMA index and are callable in Nov. 2014.
In the secondary market, trades reported by the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board showed weakening.
A dealer sold to a customer New York City Municipal Water Finance Authority 5s of 2045 at 3.85%, five basis points higher than where they traded Tuesday.
Bonds from an interdealer trade of Texas 5s of 2029 yielded 2.01%, four basis points higher than where they traded Tuesday.
A dealer bought from a customer California Health Facilities Financing Authority 5s of 2051 at 4.34%, four basis points higher than where they traded last Friday.
Another dealer bought from a customer Illinois 5.1s of 2033 at 5.45%, two basis points higher than where they traded on Friday.