New volume will inch up slightly this week with several smaller financings dominating primary market activity, led by two sizeable general obligation deals in the Northeast that were priced for retail investors on Friday.
Ipreo LLC and The Bond Buyer estimated that about $3.57 billion is expected to show up, following the revised $2.90 billion that actually came to market last week, according to Thomson Reuters. The largest offering last week was a $300 million Louisiana GO sale that was priced with a 5% coupon to yield 4.38% in 2030.
This week, New York City is on tap to sell $631 million of GO debt in a combination of negotiated and competitive sales.
During the first of a two-day retail order period on $400 million of the city’s GO debt on Friday, book-running senior manager Bank of America-Merrill Lynch priced the bifurcated 2020 maturity with a top yield of 3.35% — one with a 5% coupon and the other with a 3.5% coupon, according to the preliminary official scale.
On Friday, the generic triple-A GO scale in 2020 yielded a 2.77% at the time of pricing, according to Municipal Market Data. The scale in 2020 ended at a 2.78% at the close Friday.
The deal’s 2011 maturity had a sealed bid, while the next maturity in 2014 carried a 2% coupon and was priced to yield 1.60%.
Like the 2020 maturity, the remaining scale from 2015 to 2019 also had bifurcated coupons, but ranged in yield from 2.09% to 3.24%.
The bonds are slated to be officially priced on Tuesday.
On the same day New York will offer $185 million of taxable GO bonds in the competitive market before selling another $45.8 million of taxable GOs in a negotiated deal slated for pricing by Bank of America on Wednesday.
Both the tax-exempt and taxable bonds are rated Aa2 by Moody’s Investors Service and an equivalent AA by Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings.
In another relatively large deal this week, Siebert Brandford Shank & Co. on Tuesday will kick off a $485 million transaction when it officially prices $100 million of Maryland tax-exempt GOs. The Series 2011A bonds were offered to mom-and-pop investors in a two-day retail order period that began on Friday and was to continue on Monday.
The longest maturity in 2026 was priced on Friday with a 4 1/2% coupon to yield 3.85% — in line with the comparable MMD scale in 2026 at the time of the pricing and where it remained at the close of trading Friday
The gilt-edged bonds are part of a three-pronged series of GOs that also will consist of $378.48 million of Series B tax-exempt bonds and $6.5 million of Series 2011C taxable qualified energy conservation bonds to be sold competitively on Tuesday.
Proceeds from Series A and B will finance various public projects, including the construction of state facilities and capital grants to local governments for public schools, community colleges, correctional facilities, hospitals and cultural projects, according to the preliminary official statement.
Elsewhere in the competitive market this week, the Georgia State Road and Tollway Authority is planning to bring a $355.1 million revenue refunding issue to market on Wednesday. The deal is expected to consist of $203.46 million of Series 2011A bonds and $151.67 million of Series B bonds.
In a ratings report, Fitch said its AAA rating on the bonds is supported by a constitutional guarantee of the state’s full faith, credit, and taxing power on the bonds, as well as economic growth and conservative debt management.
A $370 million electric revenue refunding from Washington’s Energy Northwest is also planned for pricing by Citi on Wednesday with a structure that includes serial bonds maturing from 2013 to 2019 and from 2022 to 2024.
The bonds are rated triple-A by all three major rating agencies.
Puerto Rico — which is in the fourth straight year of a recession that has been more pronounced than on the mainland — will issue $250 million of public improvement GO refunding bonds on Wednesday after Morgan Stanley prices the bonds for retail investors on Tuesday.
The bonds are rated A3 by Moody’s, BBB-minus by Standard & Poor’s, and BBB-plus by Fitch. The exact maturity structure was not available at press time.
Meanwhile, Connecticut will be in the market on Friday when it plans to offer retail investors first crack at clean and drinking water state revolving fund bonds from a $200 million financing. The deal, which is being senior-managed by Ramirez & Co., is slated to be priced on March 15.