Articles by Karen Pierog

Supreme Court Declines to Hear Bonds Dispute in Puerto Rico Bankruptcy

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to take up a dispute that has roiled the $3.8 trillion U.S. municipal bond market over payments on special revenue bonds that grew out of Puerto Rico’s ongoing bankruptcy. The justices left in …

Fitch Warns Bond Insurers After Court’s Puerto Rico Bankruptcy Ruling

A U.S. Appeals Court ruling last month in Puerto Rico’s bankruptcy led Fitch Ratings on Thursday to place seven city, school, and health care ratings in states including Illinois and California on a watch list for potential downgrades. The credit …

Bond Insurers Want Independent Receiver for Puerto Rico’s Bankrupt Electric Utility

Bond insurance companies that were not part of a preliminary deal to restructure debt issued by the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) have relaunched litigation seeking a receiver for the bankrupt agency. The move could signal that Puerto Rico …

Tax Act Could Pose Challenge for Municipal Bond Market

The U.S. municipal bond market emerged bruised but not decimated by the federal tax bill that won final approval in the U.S. Congress on Wednesday , analysts said. The worst-case scenario of Congress yanking the federal tax exemption for interest …

Bond Insurer Syncora Fighting City’s Plans in Detroit Bankruptcy

Bond insurer Syncora Guarantee Inc has emerged as Detroit, Mich.’s chief nemesis in the city’s historic bankruptcy case and is fighting as if its financial life depends on a decent recovery on its $400 million exposure to the city. Since …

Municipal Defaults — Already 21 in 2012 — Another Blow for Bond Insurers

A growing number of U.S. cities are choosing to fund essential services like public safety and garbage collection over making payments on their outstanding debt, as rising costs and falling revenue deplete their budgets. So far, the bond defaults are …

Republican Attorneys General Pursue Sovereignty Claim Against Health Bill

Republican attorneys general in at least 12 U.S. states warned Monday that lawsuits will be filed to stop the federal government’s healthcare reform bill from encroaching on states’ sovereignty. The lawsuits were announced hours after the U.S. House of Representatives …

Federal Healthcare Reform Triggering Opposition by States

As the U.S. Congress once again rallies to pass healthcare reform legislation, momentum is growing in many states to pass laws to block the changes — a move that could lead to a legal battle over states’ sovereignty. Bills and …