NYC's cash balance stood at $9.4B at end of fiscal 2018

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At the close of the fourth quarter of fiscal 2018, the New York City’s unrestricted cash balance stood at $9.394 billion, nearly unchanged from the closing balance at the end of fiscal 2017, according to the Quarterly Cash report released Tuesday by Comptroller Scott Stringer.

The fiscal 2018 fourth quarter average cash balance of $9.035 billion fell below the fiscal 2017 fourth quarter average by $363 million.

As is usual for that time of the year, expenditures exceeded receipts during the quarter, reducing the cash balance by $559 million, according to data supplied by the Bureau of Budget.

The Quarterly Cash Report provides a retrospective look at the major cash events in the last quarter of fiscal 2018, which runs from April 2018 to June 2018.

The city’s usual practice is to take any year-end budget surplus and use it to prepay the following year’s expenses. The fiscal 2018 prepayment totaled $4.576 billion, compared with $4.169 billion at the end of fiscal 2017. The prepayment consisted of $1.902 billion of general obligation bond debt service, $2.174 billion of Transitional Finance Authority debt service, a $300 payment to the Retiree Health Benefits Trust Fund [RHBT] against retiree health costs for fiscal 2019, and $200 million of advance subsidy to Health + Hospitals (H+H), the report said.

In addition to the prepayment, the city deposited $100 million into the RHBT above the amount required to cover retiree healthcare costs in FY19.

Without prepayments, the city would have ended fiscal 2018 with $14.070 billion in cash on hand.
According to accompanying Cash Projection report, the Bureau of Budget expects current year balances will exceed last year’s levels.

“We project that cash flow balances will average $6.245 billion during the next four months compared to $4.735 billion during the same time last year,” the report says. “The City’s economy keeps on growing, and we expect that we will have enough cash for day-to-day operations during the leanest part of the year. As has been the pattern for many years, the annual cash balance low will occur during early to mid-December and will measure between $2.6 billion and $3.1 billion.”

The projection incorporates the added expense associated with a new DC37 contract agreement, covering about 100,000 employees.

The cash projection report details the cash balance projection for the city through Dec. 31.

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Budgets Scott Stringer City of New York, NY New York City Pension Funds New York City Health + Hospitals New York City Housing Authority New York City Transitional Finance Authority New York City Municipal Water Finance Authority New York