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by Katie Kuehner-HebertWhen Dan McAllister, the San Diego County treasurer, tax collector, was campaigning for the job in *2002-, he told community bankers he would steer some county money to them., Now he's doing it., Most of the funds in a multibillion-dollar investment pool that Mr. McAllister's office manages for the county and other local agencies such as school and water districts, are invested in securities or deposited at big banks such as Bank of America or Wells Fargo Bank. But last month Mr. McAllister announced that his office had bought a $100, 000 certificate of deposit from each of 17 San Diego-area banks., For years, banks here have been trying to attract the attention of the county to do business locally, and now that my term is almost up, I thought I should work something out with them - as long as we get acceptable rates that we don't have to haggle over, Mr. McAllister said., Normally the money would have been invested in Treasury bills, Mr. McAllister said. The banks agreed to pay 5 basis points more than the going rate on a one-year T bill, Stephen G. Andrews of Bank of Alameda said the county, like other government entities, realizing that when they invest in larger banks, Paul Smith, senior counsel of regulatory policy at the American Bankers Association, said some states and big cities, including New York, often based on Community Reinvestment Act or similar ratings, when choosing where to deposit funds., They want to use the banks they think have been the best to their community, Mr. Smith said., The $777 million-asset Pacific Trust Bank in Chula Vista, Calif., is among those that sold a CD to San Diego County., It's a good start, but they need to expand it to say $1 million to $2 million for each bank to really make an impact, said Hans Ganz, the bank's president and CEO.
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by Katie Kuehner-HebertA Westport, Conn., banking executive is following in the footsteps of Martha Stewart., appears Saturdays on local cable and will soon hit the air on network TV., Mr. Jennings became a lifestyle guru by accident, while a regional manager for the $9 billion-asset Hudson United Bancorp. of Mahwah, N.J., before it was bought this year by TD Banknorth Inc. of Portland, Maine. (He is now a senior vice president of Harbor Bank, a private bank being organized in Southport, Conn.), In 2002 he was asked to show his home and garden in a home tour for a local charity, Dress for Success. Soon after, many started coming to him not only for banking needs but for tips on how to decorate bathrooms or prune shrubs., That's when the lightbulb went off and I said, 'I should be doing more of this, Mr. Jennings, started his second career by doing guest spots on other home-and-garden TV shows, he launched his own last year. North Star Media of Studio City, Calif., recently agreed to syndicate it nationally, and several network stations in Connecticut and New York were to start broadcasting it this month., He has also launched a Web site, featuring tips on how to find antique shutters, and make corn, avocado, and tomato salad., Stephen M. Carta, the president and chief operating officer of the proposed Harbor Bank, said Mr. Jennings has developed quite a following on the Connecticut shore, He said Mr. Jennings' reputation should be good for Harbor, which organizers aim to open this year once they get a final nod from regulators and raise as much as $20 million of capital., the kind of respect and following you would hope to have in a community like Fairfield County, especially when you're the new guy on the block, Mr. Carta said.
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by Greg AbelLike a growing number of community banks nationwide, First Mariner Bank in Baltimore is in the middle of an online marketing experiment., The $1.4 billion-asset unit of First Mariner Bancorp recently relaunched a Web site, marketing campaign on the Google and Yahoo search engines., First Mariner plans to monitor and tweak the site's content and sponsored search terms as the campaign evolves, to move itself up the pecking order on both sides of the results page., said Kevin Lynch, First Mariner's senior vice president and director of e-commerce, First Mariner has committed to a three-month trial with a budget of $5, 000 a month, Mr. Lynch said. The Baltimore search-marketing consulting firm DMW Communications helped choose and edit the search terms and create site content, such as blogs, to maximize hits., The campaign is indicative of a growing, but still nascent, trend among community banks to leverage targeted online search marketing and advertising campaigns. Long the domain of large national or online-only banks with proportionately large budgets, campaigns using search engines, community Web sites, and other online vehicles are just starting to gain momentum among smaller banks as technology improves and awareness of effective tactics increases., The Web definitely has great potential for community banks, because you can target ads to local areas, said Jim Bruene, For the first decade bank advertising on the Internet was mostly national in scope. But all that changed in the last few years, As more and more people turn to the Web for financial research and resources, Mr. Bruene and other industry observers said, it makes sense for community banks to make sure consumers and businesses can find their institutions when looking for specific products in specific markets., If someone is moving to a new city or state, in the past they might go visit the nearest branch. Now that first search is done online, Mr. Bruene said., While First Mariner is using search engines to reach Web users, others are marketing their services through specific sites., For example, a popular online wedding planning site, The Knot, and its new companion site for newlyweds, The Nest, have become effective advertising vehicles for banks of all sizes., Alisha Johnson, a senior vice president and the director of marketing at the $411 million-asset Highland Bank in St. Paul, said that The Knot has helped her bank develop meaningful leads for its mortgage products., The site is national in scope but allows advertisers to target local communities by focusing on selected ZIP codes. More significantly, it lets banks and others focus on a demographic in the middle of making life-changing financial decisions., We're talking to an audience that is definitely in transition, A couple of years ago we wouldn't have even thought about it, That's music to the ears of David Liu, the chief executive and a co-founder of The Knot Inc., who sells national and community banks on the powerful notion that they can reach an audience with specific financial decisions looming., When consumers come back from their honeymoons, it's very predictable what's going to happen in that first year, Mr. Liu said, reeling off a list of transactions they are likely to make: buying a home, buying a car, buying insurance, and merging their finances., We've been able to create a destination that's very rich on the local level, Mr. Liu said. Six percent of his company's revenue comes from local advertisers, We are also the only media company that knows the moment a couple becomes married, Some community bankers say they do not see much value in using global search engines for local advertising, but Google Inc. is trying to convince them otherwise., The Mountain View, Calif., company, which reported an astounding $2.25 billion of revenue for the quarter that ended March 31, has targeted community banks as an area for growth. Jon Kaplan, its vertical head of financial services, said community banks have not leveraged search marketing as much as they could and need to take the time to understand what it offers., Our technology allows advertisers to target by a variety of geographic mechanisms - by market or state or radius around branch locations, Mr. Kaplan said. National banks have taken the lead in search advertising, but by doing so they have created an opening for the smaller guys., for example, a community bank's ad could appear showing not only its name and services but also a map indicating its location, Most of our advertisers find this to be the most cost-effective medium they advertise in, They are only reaching customers in the market for their products and services. There is no waste. These people have raised their hands and said, 'I'm interested in a checking account, One bank trying to do just that through a search campaign is Viking Bank in Seattle. The 13-year-old bank, which has six branches and two more on the drawing board, launched a Google Adwords campaign in November., Emily Cornwell, the $318 million-asset Viking's marketing director, bring in traffic., Part of the beauty of search advertising is its transparency, according to Ms. Cornwell. For example, she knows that in April, 000 searches made through Google brought up a results page that included Viking Bank, Of those 124, 000 searches, 105 resulted in clicks to Viking's site, of 0.1%. Viking's monthly fee? $300., We haven't gotten far enough to know if people are opening accounts, but we are seeing more traffic than last year, We want to get as much Web site exposure as we can, but we want customers to come into the branch, The desire for face-to-face interaction, though, has kept many community banks away from online advertising campaigns. Nearly every bank has a Web site, and many offer online banking, but anecdotal research suggests that the vast majority of community banks have not begun to consider online campaigns beyond e-mail offers to current customers., Perhaps owing to the community banking industry's proudly held reputation for relationship building and know-your-name customer service, some bank marketing executives said they see no need for online campaigns., With our style of community banking, people are real close to us, said Mike McDonald, a senior vice president at the $1.7 billion-asset Ameris Bancorp, a multibank holding company in Moultrie, We have not felt the need to advertise on the Web, Still, others are dipping their toe into online advertising., K Bank in Randallstown, We've been working with a few nonprofit and local community sites where people can find us as a resource, said Nicole Topper, K Bank's vice president of marketing and advertising., which is largely devoted to radio, billboard, and newspaper campaigns., The $621 million-asset bank is not experimenting with search marketing, Given we are a regional bank in Maryland, Otto Suarez, the president and marketing director at the Miami financial services marketing firm Oz Communications Inc., said he believes it is just a matter of time before community banks start advertising online en masse., Banks are often slower to react and adapt to new technologies and changing times. I think it's a great avenue, Mr. Abel is a freelance writer in Baltimore
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by The Municipal Bond Index, The Bond Buyer Municipal Bond Index is a daily price index based on 40, long-term municipal bonds. The index's value is expressed in points and, 32ds. The figures shown are weekly averages of the index's daily figures, for each week ending Thursday., The index contains 40 long-term municipal bonds. Taxable bonds, variable-rate bonds, and private placements are excluded, but bonds, subject to the alternative minimum tax and fixed-rate remarketings can be, included. The index is based on price quotations provided by Standard &, Poor's Securities Evaluations. It is calculated every business day using, prices as of 4 p.m. Eastern time., The index's value is calculated by taking the dollar bid price for each, bond, converting it to represent what the price would be if the bond had a, standard 6% coupon rate, averaging the converted prices, and multiplying, the result by the current value of the coefficient. The coefficient, compensates for the changes made twice a month in the composition of the, index., The average yield to par call is calculated using the average coupon rate, average par call date, and average dollar price. The average yield to, maturity is calculated using the average maturity date., The Weekly Bond Indexes, The three weekly bond indexes are calculated every Thursday (or Wednesday, if Thursday or Friday is a legal holiday). They represent theoretical, yields rather than actual price or yield quotations. Municipal bond, dealers and banks are asked to estimate what a current-coupon bond for, each issuer would yield if the bond was sold at par value. The indexes are, simple averages of the average estimated yields of the bonds., The 20-Bond Index consists of 20 general obligation bonds that mature in, 20 years. The average rating of the 20 bonds is roughly equivalent to, Moody's Investors Service's Aa3 and Standard & Poor's Corp.'s AA. (No, average Fitch rating is provided because Fitch does not rate all of the, bonds in the index.), The 11-Bond Index uses a select group of 11 bonds in the 20-Bond Index., The average rating of the 11 bonds is roughly equivalent to Moody's Aa1, rating and S&P's AA-plus. (No average Fitch rating is provided.), The bonds currently used in the two indexes are listed below. The bonds in, the 11-Bond Index are marked with an asterisk., Moody's, Fitch Moody's, Fitch Moody's, Fitch, Baltimore, Md. A1, A+ Houston, Tex. Aa3, *Pennsylvania Aa2, California A2, A- *Memphis, Tenn. Aa2, *Phoenix, Ariz. Aa1, Chicago, Ill A1, AA- Milwaukee, Wis. Aa2, Puerto Rico Baa2, Dade Co., Fla. Aa3, A+ *New Jersey Aa3, *Seattle, Wash. Aaa, *Denver, Colo. Aa1, AA+ New York City A1, *South Carolina Aaa, *Florida Aa1, AA+ New York State Aa3, *Washington Aa1, *Georgia Aaa, AAA *North Carolina Aa1, The Revenue Bond Index, The Revenue Bond Index consists of 25 various revenue bonds that mature in, 30 years. The average rating is roughly equivalent to Moody's A1 and S&P's, A-plus. (No average Fitch rating is provided because Fitch does not rate, all the bonds in the index.) The bonds currently used in the index and, their ratings are listed below., Moody's S&P Fitch, Atlanta, Ga., airport (AMT) A1 A+ A+, California Housing Finance Agency, multi-unit rental (AMT) Aa2 A+, Connecticut Housing Finance Authority Aaa AAA NR, Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport Board, Tex. (AMT) A1 A+ A+, Energy Northwest (formerly WPPSS), Wash., power revenue Aa1 AA-, Illinois Health Facilities Authority (Northwestern Memorial Hospital), Aa2 AA+ NR, Illinois Housing Development Authority, multifamily A1 A+ A+, Intermountain Power Agency, Utah A1 A+ AA-, JEA (formerly Jacksonville Electric Authority), Fla. electric revenue, Aa2 AA AA, Kentucky Turnpike Authority Aa3 AA- AA-, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Calif., electric revenue Aa3, A+ AA-, Maricopa Co. Industrial Development Authority, Ariz. (Samaritan Health, Service) Baa1 BBB NR, Massachusetts Port Authority (AMT) Aa3 AA- AA-, MEAG Power (formerly Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia) A2 A, Nebraska Public Power District, power supply A1 A+ A+, New Jersey Turnpike Authority, turnpike revenue A3 A A, New York State Local Government Assistance Corp., revenue A3 AA-, New York State Power Authority, general purpose Aa2 AA- AA, North Carolina Municipal Power Agency No. 1, Catawba electric revenue, Baa1 BBB+ A-, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, consolidated (AMT) A1 AA-, Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority Baa1 A- NR, Salt River Project Agricultural Improvement and Power District, Ariz., electric revenue Aa2 AA NR, South Carolina Public Service Authority, electric revenue Aa2 AA-, Texas Municipal Power Agency A2 A+ A, Virginia Housing Development Authority (AMT) Aa1 AA+ NR, Short-Term Indexes, The Bond Buyer One-Year Note Index is calculated once a week on Wednesday, (Tuesday if Wednesday is a legal holiday). It represents theoretical, yields rather than actual price or yield quotations. The index is a simple, average of the average estimated yields of the notes., Ten note issuers are used: California, Colorado, Idaho, Los Angeles, County, Michigan, New Jersey, New York City (RANs), Pennsylvania, Texas, and Wisconsin. All issues are rated MIG-1 by Moody's Investors Service., California, Michigan, and New York City are rated SP-1 by Standard &, Poor's Corp., while all other issuers are rated SP-1-plus., U.S. Treasury 10-Year Note and 30-Year Bond, The U.S. Treasury 10-year note and 30-year bond yields are the quotes, appearing at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time on Moneyline Telerate's Webstation.
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by verage Municipal Bond Yields -- Compiled Weekly, 20-Bond 11-Bond 25-Bond 10-Year 30-Year, GO Index1 GO Index1 Revenue2 Treasury3 Treasury3, *2006-, MAR 16 4.40 4.33 5.08 4.64 4.70, 9 4.45 4.38 5.11 4.73 4.72, 2 4.39 4.32 5.07 4.64 4.62, FEB 23 4.36 4.29 5.04 4.56 4.51, 16 4.41 4.34 5.09 4.59 4.57, 9 4.42 4.34 5.14 4.54 4.64, 2 4.43 4.36 5.17 4.57 4.70, JAN 26 4.42 4.35 5.15 4.52 4.70, 19 4.33 4.26 5.08 4.37 4.54, 12 4.37 4.29 5.11 4.41 4.59, 5 4.35 4.28 5.09 4.35 4.54, *2005-, DEC 29 4.38 4.31 5.11 4.36 4.52, 22 4.42 4.35 5.15 4.43 4.61, 15 4.48 4.41 5.19 4.47 4.67, 8 4.49 4.42 5.20 4.46 4.67, 1 4.53 4.46 5.23 4.51 4.72, NOV 22 4.51 4.44 5.20 4.43 4.66, 17 4.52 4.45 5.21 4.46 4.65, 9 4.61 4.54 5.24 4.64 4.83, 3 4.63 4.55 5.24 4.64 4.84, OCT 27 4.56 4.49 5.21 4.56 4.77, 20 4.47 4.40 5.13 4.45 4.67, 13 4.51 4.43 5.11 4.47 4.70, 6 4.44 4.36 5.06 4.37 4.59, SEP 29 4.39 4.31 5.04 4.29 4.52, 22 4.30 4.23 4.98 4.18 4.47, 15 4.30 4.23 4.96 4.22 4.51, 8 4.26 4.19 4.87 4.14 4.42, 1 4.18 4.11 4.83 4.02 4.29, AUG 25 4.25 4.18 4.87 4.16 4.37, 18 4.27 4.21 4.88 4.21 4.42, 11 4.37 4.30 4.93 4.34 4.53, 4 4.38 4.31 4.90 4.33 4.52, JUL 28 4.31 4.23 4.86 4.20 4.40, 21 4.36 4.29 4.87 4.28 4.50, 14 4.30 4.23 4.84 4.18 4.41, 7 4.27 4.19 4.82 4.05 4.30, JUN 30 4.24 4.16 4.77 3.93 4.20, 23 4.23 4.16 4.76 3.96 4.25, 16 4.31 4.24 4.83 4.08 4.38, 9 4.21 4.13 4.75 3.96 4.23, JUN 2 4.18 4.10 4.72 3.89 4.23, MAY 26 4.24 4.17 4.78 4.08 4.43, 19 4.25 4.18 4.81 4.11 4.44, 12 4.35 4.27 4.87 4.17 4.52, 5 4.38 4.30 4.84 4.16 4.59, APR 28 4.37 4.29 4.83 4.17 4.51, 21 4.42 4.34 4.89 4.30 4.64, 14 4.49 4.41 4.98 4.36 4.71, 7 4.56 4.48 5.02 4.47 4.79, MAR 31 4.61 4.52 5.03 4.49 4.76, 24 4.63 4.55 5.04 4.60 4.86, 17 4.56 4.47 4.99 4.46 4.75, (1) General obligation bonds maturing in 20 years are used in compiling, these indexes. The 20-bond index has an average rating equivalent to, Moody's, Aa2 and S&P's AA, while the 11-bond index is equivalent to Aa1 and AA-plus., (No average Fitch rating is provided because Fitch does not rate two of the, bonds.) The 11 bonds used in the higher-grade index are marked with an, asterisk., Moody's, Fitch Moody's, Fitch Moody's, Fitch, Baltimore, Md. A1, A+ Houston, Tex. Aa3, AA- *Pennsylvania, California A2, A *Memphis, Tenn. Aa2, AA- *Phoenix, Ariz., Chicago, Ill Aa3, AA- Milwaukee, Wis. Aa2, AA+ Puerto Rico, Baa2, Dade Co., Fla. Aa3, A+ *New Jersey Aa2, AA- *Seattle, Wash. Aaa, *Denver, Colo. Aa1, AA+ New York City A1, A+ *South, Carolina Aaa, *Florida Aa1, AA+ New York State Aa3, AA- *Washington Aa1, *Georgia Aaa, AAA *North Carolina Aa1, (2) Revenue bonds maturing in 30 years are used in compiling this index., It has an average rating equivalent to Moody's A1 and S&P's A-plus. (No, average Fitch rating is provided because Fitch does not rate seven of the, bonds.) The bonds and their ratings are:, Moody's S&P Fitch, Atlanta, Ga., airport (AMT) A1 A+ A+, California Housing Finance Agency, multi-unit rental (AMT) Aa2 A+ NR, Connecticut Housing Finance Authority Aaa AAA NR, Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport Board, Tex. (AMT) A1 A+ A+, Energy Northwest (formerly WPPSS), Wash., power revenue Aa1 AA- AA-, Illinois Health Facilities Authority (Northwestern Memorial Hospital), Aa2 AA+ NR, Illinois Housing Development Authority, multifamily A1 A+ A+, Intermountain Power Agency, Utah A1 A+ AA-, JEA (formerly Jacksonville Electric Authority), Fla. electric revenue, Aa2 AA AA, Kentucky Turnpike Authority Aa3 AA- AA-, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Calif., electric revenue Aa3, A+ AA-, Maricopa Co. Industrial Development Authority, Ariz. (Samaritan Health, Service) Baa1 BBB NR, Massachusetts Port Authority (AMT) Aa3 AA- AA-, MEAG Power (formerly Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia) A2 AA-, Nebraska Public Power District, power supply A1 A+ A+, New Jersey Turnpike Authority, turnpike revenue A3 A A, New York State Local Government Assistance Corp., revenue A3 AA- A+, New York State Power Authority, general purpose Aa2 AA- AA, North Carolina Municipal Power Agency No. 1, Catawba electric revenue, Baa1 BBB+ A-, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, consolidated (AMT) A1 AA- AA-, Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority Baa1 A- NR, Salt River Project Agricultural Improvement and Power District, Ariz., electric revenue Aa2 AA NR, South Carolina Public Service Authority, electric revenue Aa2 AA- AA, Texas Municipal Power Agency A2 A+ A, Virginia Housing Development Authority (AMT) Aa1 AA+ NR, (3) Yield on the most current U.S. Treasury 10-year note and 30-year, Treasury bond (Sources: GovPX Inc., Garvin GuyButler).
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by Michael Scarchilli and Matthew PosnerWith no telling economic data scheduled for release and primary market supply still lacking in the heart of the summer doldrums, The market is a little sluggish, and I don't see a lot of activity going on, but it is the last couple weeks of summer, The tone is pretty good and we are pretty firm now. There is just not a lot of activity and not much to hang your hat on. Although it is slow now, last week started out the same way and then Tuesday, Wednesday, Trades reported by the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board today showed little movement. A dealer sold to a customer Southern California Tobacco Securitization Authority 5.125s of 2046 at 5.11%, down two basis points from where they traded yesterday. A dealer sold to a customer Roseville, Calif., 5.25s of 2036 at 5.13%, up one basis point from where they were sold yesterday. Bonds from an interdealer trade of Virginia Public Building Authority 4.25s of 2024 yielded 4.44%, even with where they traded Friday. Bonds from an interdealer trade of Oyster Bay, N.Y., 4.25s of 2023 yielded 4.32%, down two basis points from where they were sold Friday., There was little movement in the Treasury market yesterday. The 10-year Treasury note, which opened at a yield of 4.86%, finished at 4.87%, while the two-year note was quoted near the end of the session at a yield of 4.82%, the same level at which it opened., It's been dormant for us. The sticker-shock that people keep referring to has finally gotten to our customers, There is interest but nobody is pulling the trigger right now. Just watching the markets today, While the new-issue calendar is fairly light again this week, primary market activity was vibrant yesterday., Texas brought forth the largest deal, when it competitively sold $4.6 billion of tax and revenue anticipation notes to 16 different bidders. The one-year notes are scheduled to mature on Aug. 31, 2007. Moody's Investors Service rates the notes MIG-1, Standard & Poor's rates the credit SP-1-plus, and Fitch Ratings assigns its F1-plus rating, the highest short-term ratings possible from the agencies. A group led by Citigroup Global Markets Inc. took $1.5 billion of the Trans, winning $1 billion with an effective rate of 3.6049%, and $500 million with an effective rate of 3.5979%., On the negotiated side, Citigroup priced $834 million of Michigan Building Authority revenue refunding bonds in two series. The larger $434 million series matures in *2031-, 2032 and *2036-, yielding 4.39% in *2031-, 4.41% in *2032-, and 4.43% in *2036-, all with 5% coupons and callable at par in 2016. There is also a $400 million series of capital appreciation bonds, which mature from 2013 through 2031. Financial Guaranty Insurance Co. insures all bonds, and the underlying credit is rated Aa3 by Moody's and AA-minus by both Standard & Poor's and Fitch., Bonds maturing in 2031 were tightest to Monday's Municipal Market Data triple-A yield curve, with yields 12 basis points over. The remaining bonds, which mature in 2032 and *2036-, were 13 basis points over the curve., The Michigan Building Authority last sold revenue bonds in October, when Bear, Stearns & Co. priced $242.8 million of revenue and revenue refunding bonds for the authority. The bonds mature from 2006 through *2030-, which are uninsured. Among 5% coupon paper, bonds maturing in 2033 were tightest to Monday's MMD triple-A yield curve, with yields four basis points over. Bonds maturing in 2018 and 2019 were widest to the spread, with yields 20 basis points over., Bear Stearns priced $99 million of Ysleta, Tex., Independent School District unlimited tax school building bonds. The bonds mature from 2007 through *2031-, yields were selectively lowered by one or two basis points. The Permanent School Fund guarantee program insures all bonds, except those maturing in *2031-, which are insured by Financial Security Assurance Inc. The underlying credit is rated AA-minus by Standard & Poor's and A-plus by Fitch., UBS Securities LLC priced $365 million of wastewater system revenue bonds for Honolulu yesterday. The deal, which is secured by the net revenues of the wastewater system, will consist of $278.9 million of senior-lien first resolution bonds, which includes three series of bonds ranging in maturities from 2007 through *2036-, and $86.7 million of junior-lien second resolution bonds, which are slated to mature serially from 2007 through *2026-, with a term bond in 2032. Pricing information was not available by press time. The bonds are insured by MBIA Insurance Corp., On the competitive side, Wisconsin sold $72 million of master lease certificates of participation to Goldman, Sachs & Co., and A-plus by both Standard & Poor's and Fitch., Also, Spartanburg County, S.C., School District No. 1 competitively sold $67 million of general obligation bonds to Citigroup, with a TIC of 4.49%. The bonds, which are insured by FSA, mature from 2011 through *2031-
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by Christine AlbanoTwo Illinois issuers will sell $925 million in general obligation bonds, in the primary market this week for various purposes -- including a tunnel, and reservoir project in Chicago -- and to refund older debt., The summer note season, meanwhile, will continue to heat up this week, with at least three $100 million-plus deals expected to get keen attention, from short-term investors such as money market funds., In the long-term market, the Metropolitan Reclamation District of Greater, Chicago will sell a $350 million deal consisting of $250 million in, limited-tax GO bonds, and $100 million of unlimited-tax GOs., The structure of the deal, which is being priced by UBS Securities LLC, had not been entirely determined on Friday. However, both parts are, expected, to be fixed-rate bonds with serial and term maturities between 2007 and, 2035., Proceeds from the unlimited-tax issue will finance continuing work on the, city's $3.1 billion, 50-year Deep Tunnel project that began in 1976. The, project consists of 109 miles of interceptor tunnels with three reservoirs, prevent storm runoff into Lake Michigan and the Chicago River., The limited-tax GOs will finance other routine projects, such as those, that provide storm water control and wastewater treatment for Chicago and, suburbs., The sale will be the district's first market entrance since it obtained a, third gilt-edged rating Thursday when it was upgraded by Standard & Poor's, AAA from AA-plus, due to strong growth in Cook County's tax base, strong, financial operations, and substantial progress made to the tunnel project, thus far. Moody's Investors Service and Fitch Ratings already maintained, their Aaa and AAA ratings on the district., Meanwhile, the state of Illinois will roll out two separate GO sales, totaling $575 million., The larger sale consists of $289.9 million refunding that will be priced, Loop Capital Markets with a structure that matures from 2007 to 2021., other $270 million will be new-money bonds tentatively scheduled to mature, from 2007 to 2031 that will be priced by Goldman, Sachs & Co., A source at Loop's New York office on Friday said the two firms will, price their deals on the same day, but were still ironing out when that, will, be at press time., An underwriting source at Goldman said the firm was still negotiating the, final details of the sale, including the possibility of a retail order, period., Although the bonds would qualify for insurance, they were likely to come, The state's GO bonds are rated Aa3 by Moody's and AA by Standard & Poor's, and Fitch., Elsewhere in the Midwest, Michigan will sell $244.7 million in new-money, transportation revenue bonds. The debt is slated to mature from 2007 to, 2021,, and will be priced by Loop on Thursday after a retail order period on, Wednesday. The bonds will be insured, although the guarantor had not yet, been, determined on Friday, a source at Loop said., One of the other sizable deals taking place in the negotiated market this, week includes a $240 million sale of gas revenue bonds from the, Clarksville,, Tenn., Gas Acquisition Corp. The all new-money bonds, which are rated Aa3, Moody's and AA-minus by Standard & Poor's, will mature from 2007 to *2022-, will be priced by Merrill, Lynch & Co. Thursday., In the long-term competitive market, there will be slim pickings when it, comes to finding large deals. The largest will be a two-pronged sale of, natural triple-A-rated GO bonds from Georgia totaling $155.1 million. The, deal will consist of one series of tax-exempt bonds totaling $99.1 million, and another series of taxable bonds totaling $56 million. Both series will, mature from 2007 to 2026., San Jose is the only other municipality with a deal over $100 million, expected in the competitive market tomorrow when it sells $110 million of, bonds that are rated AA-plus by Standard & Poor's and Fitch and are, structured to mature from 2007 to 2036., In the short-term market, Wyoming will sell $250 million of one-year, fixed-rate tax and revenue anticipation notes in what will be the largest, deal this week, which marks the second official week of the summer note, season, which typically lasts through August. Scheduled to be priced on, Wednesday, the one-year note sale is rated SP1-plus by Standard & Poor's, F1-plus by Fitch., Houston, meanwhile, will sell $150 million of one-year, fixed-rate TRANs, that mature in 2007 and are rated SP1-plus by Standard & Poor's, and MIG-1, Moody's., Additionally, the University of Missouri Curators will sell $115 million, in one-year fixed-rate notes that will finance various capital projects and, are rated MIG-1 by Moody's, and SP1-plus by Standard & Poor's., Todd Pardula, a portfolio manager at American Century Investments in, MountainView, Calif., said note deals have cheapened up over the last, couple, of months and that should draw buyers to the three large deals planned for, this week., I think note levels will be cheaper than what people thought they would, said Pardula, who manages a $275 million national, tax-free money market fund., People are always talking about less supply this year than in past, years, which would have a positive effective on the note market for issuers, But that has been more than, offset, the fact that weeklies have cheapened much more than expected and there, For example, Pardula said that in the California market, he expects, one-year, fixed-rate notes that were priced at a 3.50% yield about two, weeks, ago to be trading about 10 to 15 basis points higher in yield this week due, to the speed at which rates are rising in the daily and weekly floater, market, and the expectation of additional Fed tightening being built into the, market., In the national note market, yields are generally between five and 10, basis points higher than in the California market, Pardula said.
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by March 2-4, Lake, Tahoe Outing at Caesars' Lake Tahoe. The event includes cocktail reception, and dinner. For more information or to register contact Mike Carrington at, 415-477-0143 or mcarrington&lt, at&gt, March 5-8, The Oregon Municipal Finance Officers Association will host a spring, conference for the OMFOA and the Oregon Association of County Treasurers, and Finance Officers at the Salishan Lodge in Glenden Beach, Ore. For more, information or to register contact Devon Hood at 503-282-9288 or visit, events, links, EPG2234., March 10, The Municipal Forum of New York will host a talk and luncheon at the Union, League Club in Manhattan. The speaker will be John Bryan, chief financial, officer of the New York State Thruway Authority. For more information or, to register contact Colleen Woodell at 212-438-2118 or, colleen_woodell&lt, at&gt, sandp.com., March 14-15, The Bond Buyer and the Hillsborough Chapter of the Florida GFOA present, the Florida Public Finance Conference at the Wyndham Harbour Island Resort, in Tampa, Fla. For more information call 800-803-3423 or visit, March 16-17, The California Debt & Investment Advisory Commission will host a program, on the Mechanics of a Bond Sale in Foster City. It will cover the methods, of structuring a debt financing, selecting a finance team, preparing legal, documents, working with rating agencies, marketing and pricing, understanding federal arbitrage rules, and investing proceeds. For more, information or to register contact Tuan Do at 916-653-6046 or, tdo&lt, at&gt, treasurer.ca.gov., March 19-21, The International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association will hold its, Transportation Improvement Forum at the Fairmont Miramar Hotel in Santa, Monica, Calif. For more information or to register call 202-659-4620 ext., March 20-22, The International Economic Development Council will host its 2006 Economic, Development Summit at the JW Marriott Pennsylvania Avenue Hotel in, Washington, D.C. For more information or to register visit, EDSummit, travel.html., March 29-30, The Bond Buyer will host a conference on Defining and Managing Your OPEB, Liabilities at the Chicago Marriott Downtown Hotel. For more information, March 31-April 4, The American Society for Public Administration will hold its 67th national, The Sky's the Limit: Innovation and Idealism in Public, at the Denver Marriott Tech Center. For more information or to, April 5-7, The New York State Government Finance Officers' Association will hold its, 28th annual conference at the Albany Marriott Hotel. For More Information, April 10-11, The Bond Buyer will host its Tourism Facilities Financing Conference at, the Hyatt Regency Inner Harbor Hotel in Baltimore. For more information, April 12, The California Debt & Investment Advisory Commission will host a Dynamics, of Marketing and Pricing Bonds Workshop in San Francisco. A panel of, speakers will take participants through the negotiated and competitive, bond sale process and the market factors that go into pricing. For more, information or to register contact Tuan Do at 916-653-6046 or, tdo&lt, at&gt, treasurer.ca.gov., April 26-28, The Financial Markets Association will host its 2006 Securities Compliance, Seminar at the Omni Hotel in San Francisco. The three-day event for, intermediate and advanced compliance specialists, internal auditors, risk, manager, attorneys, and regulators combines general sessions, interactive, workshops, and peer networking opportunities. For more information or to, register contact Dorcas Pearce at 703-749-1579 or visit, affiliates, fma., May 2-5, The National Federation of Municipal Analysts will host its 23d Annual, Conference at the Loews Santa Monica Hotel in Santa Monica, Calif. For, further information contact Lisa Good at 412-341-4898 or lgood&lt, at&gt, nfma.org., May 4-5, The California Debt and Investment Advisory Commission will hold two, half-day workshops on Current Practice in Assessing and Using Developer, Fees. The first will be held May 4 in Ontario, Calif., and the second on, May 5 in Sacramento. The workshops will assist local communities in, building cooperative relationships with developers and achieving their, development plans. For more information or to register contact Tuan Do at, 916-653-6046 or tdo&lt, at&gt, treasurer.ca.gov., May 10, The Government Finance Officers Association will host its 100th annual, conference at the Montreal Convention Center in Quebec. The gathering will, bring together over 4, 000 public sector accounting and finance, practitioners to gain knowledge from leading industry experts, theorists, and each other. For more information or to register call 312-977- *9700-, e-mail conference&lt, at&gt, May 10, The California Debt and Investment Advisory Commission will host its 5th, Annual CDIAC Tools to Revitalize California Communities in Los Angeles., The event will highlight various financing tools to assist California, communities with economic development. For more information or to register, contact Tuan Do at 916-653-6046 or tdo&lt, at&gt, treasurer.ca.gov., May 11-12, The Council of Infrastructure Financing Authorities will host its 18th, Annual Washington Federal Policy Conference at the Wyndham Washington, D.C., Hotel, focusing on developments in Congress and the executive branch, concerning state revolving funds, infrastructure financing, environmental policy. For more information or to register call, May 21-24, Pennsylvania GFOA will host its 2006 State Conference at the Nittany Lion, Inn in State College, Pa. For more information or to register contact, Bruce Koller at 610-437-3366 or koller&lt, at&gt, allentownparking.com., June 8-10, The Carolinas Municipal Advisory Council will host its sixth annual joint, meeting of the Bond Club of Virginia and the Securities Dealers of the, Carolinas, at the Wild Dunes Resort in Isle of Palm, S.C. For more, information or to register contact Amy Taylor at 919-661-9477 or, Amy&lt, at&gt, carolinasmac.com.
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by Compiled by Matthew KrepsDollar amounts represent the amount of bonds outstanding in the issue., Rating changes that result from the purchase of the letters of credit or, bond, insurance for issues in the secondary market are not included., ISSUER AMOUNT CHANGE, BOND ($000S) TO FROM NAME COMMENTS, Colorado Health Facilities Authority, revenue bonds (Vail Valley Medical, Center) 45, 165 BBB-plus BBB S&P Very strong business, position, sound cash flow, strong management team., Delta Charter Township, Mich., general obligation bonds 4, 990 AA, AA-minus S&P Economic growth, prudent financial management., Hedwig Village, Tex., general obligation bonds 3, 220 AA AA-minus, S&P Substantial retail development, continued strong economic growth, substantial flexibility to raise property tax., Henderson Independent School District, Tex., general obligation bonds, 700 A3 Baa2 Moody Sizable tax base growth, solid financial, position, modest debt burden, swift debt retirement., Illinois Educational Facilities Authority, revenue bonds (Art Institute of, Chicago) 192, 310 A-plus A S&P Achievement of budgetary, balance on full accrual basis in FY *2005-, strengthening of liquidity, ratios, solid progress in ongoing capital campaign, limited additional, debt plans., Lakeland (City), Fla., revenue bonds (Lakeland Regional Health Systems), 600 A2 A1 Moody Downturn in FY 2005 and year-to-date, financial performance, declining liquidity, increased competition., Little Falls (Township), N.J., general obligation bonds 12, 900 A3, A2 Moody Narrowed financial position, moderately sized tax base with, virtually no new growth., Montgomery County, special obligation bonds, Senior Series 2002 A, (West Germantown Development District) 11, 600 A3 Baa3 Moody, High quality and residential nature of development, expectation that, pledged revenues will continue to cover debt service requirements., New Hampshire Health & Educational Facilities Authority, revenue bonds, (Daniel Webster College) 16, 700 B1 Ba3 Moody Very low, unrestricted liquidity, reliance on line of credit for seasonal cash flow, two years of decline in total net tuition revenue., Newman-Crows Landing Unified School District, Calif., general obligation, bonds 11, 613 A A-minus S&P Improved economic indicators, proven track record of prudent financial management., Oakland Redevelopment Agency, Calif., subordinate housing set-aside, revenue bonds, Series 2000 T 39, 395 A A-minus S&P Expansion, of taxable project areas to 42% of total city area from 20% since *2000-, strong growth of assessed value., Old Spanish Trail, Almeda Corridors Redevelopment Authority, Tex., increment contract revenue bonds 8, 100 Baa2 Baa3 Moody, Strong growth in pledged revenues, solid coverage of peak debt service, satisfactory legal structure., Plaquemines Parish School Board, sales tax revenue bonds 11, Ba1 Ba2 Moody Continued operations at large oil and gas companies, in parish, which support sales tax collections., Pontiac General Building Authority, Mich., general obligation limited tax, bonds 1, 900 Ba2 Baa3 Moody Impact of continued city-wide, financial challenges, economic concentration anchored by auto industry, declining population and wealth indicators and persistently high, unemployment rates., Riverside Unified School District, Calif., general obligation bonds, 800 A1 A2 Moody Strong growth in relatively large tax base, prudent financial management, healthy financial position, moderate debt, burden., Sacramento County, Calif., issuer credit rating n.a. AA-minus AA, S&P Escalating fixed costs, sluggish growth of ongoing revenues, structural budget gap putting downward pressure on financial reserves., Sacramento County, Calif., certificates of participation and pension, obligation bonds 921, 349 A-plus AA-minus S&P Escalating, fixed costs, sluggish growth of ongoing revenues, structural budget gap, putting downward pressure on financial reserves., Saginaw (City), Tex., general obligation bonds 20, 000 A2 A3, Moody Strong tax base growth, ample financial reserves, steady debt, retirement, manageable debt burden., Springfield Park District, Ill., general obligation bonds 10, 600 A3, A2 Moody Current deficit fund position resulting from structural, imbalance., Washington County, general obligation bonds 199, 801 AA-minus, A-plus S&P Good financial performance, consistently healthy and, steadily increasing reserve levels, ongoing growth and diversification in, local economy, county's role as regional employment center., West Salem School District, Wis., general obligation bonds 21, 410 A3, Baa1 Moody Modestly sized tax base with expected future growth, favorable proximity to La Crosse, sound financial position., Dollar amounts represent the amount of bonds outstanding in the issue., Rating changes that result from the purchase of letters of credit or bond, insurance for issues in the secondary market are not included.
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by all of which failed., The SEC's enforcement lawyers and attorneys for Kasirer and Goldstein this week refused to comment on the possibility of a settlement in the case. However, court documents show that the lawyers for Kasirer and Goldstein have proposed separate settlements to the SEC. Those settlement proposals were to be put before the commission for approval, and a pretrial conference that was previously planned for Nov. 27 has been indefinitely postponed while the parties work on the settlements, the documents show., In addition, where the case is now pending, so that all settlement funds in the case can be combined and distributed to investors to the extent possible., The case was transferred to the court in Los Angeles in March 2005., The SEC filed charges against Kasirer and Goldstein, as well as other individuals and entities, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in Chicago in July 2004., of a Ponzi-type scheme involving the Heritage projects, in which bond proceeds from 11 different offerings were commingled and used for entirely different purposes than were intended or disclosed to investors., According to the commission, the development costs of the Heritage facilities, as well as the fees and payments to Kasirer, members of his family, and affiliated companies, outstripped the proceeds from the bond offerings. As a result, Kasirer starting using the proceeds from more recent offerings to pay off earlier bonds and the expenses of earlier bond-financed Heritage projects., Kasirer, an attorney in Beverly Hills, Calif., effectively controlled Heritage Healthcare Development through several companies, managed the bond-financed facilities, and directed the diversion of the bond proceeds, the SEC claimed., Goldstein, an attorney near Encino, Calif., served as outside counsel to Heritage from its inception until July 1998 when he was hired by Heritage as general counsel, executive vice president, and chief operating officer. He reviewed all official statements prior to the issuance of bonds, the commission said., The bonds were all underwritten by the now-defunct Minneapolis-based firm, Miller & Schroeder Financial Inc., and were sold to 1, 800 investors in 36 states. Beginning in February *2000-, the Heritage facilities ran out of money. The bonds went into default and the facilities -- which were located in Texas, Florida, Illinois, and California -- all failed., In its complaint, the SEC asked that Kasirer, Goldstein, and three other defendants be permanently enjoined from committing further securities law violations, be required to disgorge all ill-gotten gains, and be forced to pay civil penalties. The commission did not specify the amount of ill-gotten gains or the amount of civil penalties that should be imposed., The case was transferred to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California in Los Angeles in 2005 because most of the defendants and some of the facilities were located in the state., Judge Matthew F. Kennelly, in the federal court in Chicago, had scheduled a final pretrial conference for Nov. 27. But the parties began holding settlement talks and Judge Ronald S.W. Lew, of the federal court in Los Angeles, indefinitely delayed or extended all pretrial activities to allow for consideration of the settlements., The proposed settlements would cover not only Kasirer and Goldstein, but also the remaining defendants, including Kasirer's wife, Debra Schoenfeld Kasirer, and eight companies with which they were affiliated. Debra Kasirer was paid as an interior design consultant by one of the Heritage affiliates but there is no evidence that she performed any work., In March *2005-, the SEC settled with the three defendants associated with Miller & Schroeder -- James Iverson, part owner, executive vice president, and chairman of the firm, and Victor Dhooge, a vice president of the firm, both of whom managed the underwritings, as well as Joel Boehm, an attorney who acted as counsel for the firm in the bond offerings and issued favorable legal opinions on the bonds., Under the settlements, Iverson and Dhooge were barred from the industry for at least five years. Iverson was ordered to disgorge $150, 941 in ill-gotten gains as well as a $75, 000 civil penalty. Dhooge was ordered to disgorge a total of $427, 407 in ill-gotten gains and prejudgment interest, but the commission waived all but $260, 000 of that amount after he demonstrated he could not pay it. Boehm was ordered to disgorge $152, 500 in ill-gotten gains plus $63, 903 in prejudgment interest, however all but $24, 168 of that was waived after he showed he could not pay it. All three were permanently enjoined from engaging in future violations of the securities laws., In addition
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