Tax-Exempt Rates Are On The Rise

By |December 1, 2016|

Tax-exempt rates have climbed steadily since July's historical lows, and the pace picked up after the presidential election. Some hospitals had to put refundings on hold, but others are speeding up plans to issue new money debt, and with the MMD now higher than Treasuries, taxable debt is looking more attractive.

Hospital Bond Issuance Soars in 2016

By |October 24, 2016|

Fueled by low interest rates and a flurry of refundings, hospitals returned to the municipal public debt markets en masse this year, ending the drought and setting the stage for new issuance records. Bond underwriters couldn't be happier.

MSRB Wants Bank Loans Disclosed

By |October 13, 2016|

The MSRB is pushing hard for more regulation of bank placements, but so far the SEC has not shown much interest and is not providing guidance on how unregulated loans could become regulated securities. It remains to be seen if the MSRB's latest move asking borrowers to voluntary disclose loans on EMMA will be more successful.

Reading the Fed Tea Leaves

By |September 26, 2016|

The Fed held rates unchanged at last week's FOMC meeting, noting economic growth was not quite there yet, but left the door open to a hike later this year. Fed watchers are debating what to expect for the next three months and for 2017, and predictive tools diverge on what the Fed will do.

Hospitals Settle for Failure to Disclose

By |September 8, 2016|

The SEC recently announced settlements with 71 municipal issuers for continuing disclosure violations uncovered by the agency's MCDC initiative launched in 2014. Four healthcare providers were on the list and more are expected in the coming months.

Selling 100-Year Hospital Bonds

By |August 14, 2016|

Would your organization issue bonds due in a hundred years? That's what New York and Presbyterian Hospital and Cleveland Clinic did in the last 24 months. Locking in interest rates for the next century may be tempting to some, but ultra-long bonds could prove costly if called.

Can Hospitals Lock In Low Rates?

By |July 7, 2016|

The MMD 30-year tax-exempt yield reached a new low of 1.93% on Wednesday as foreign investors chase yield and safety and the Fed weighs in on the Brexit fallout. Hospitals planning to sell bonds in the next year or two should understand the various options available for locking in today's rates.

Hospital Bond Trading Markups

By |July 6, 2016|

Current municipal market rules do not require underwriters to disclose markups on bonds traded in the secondary market, but savvy hospitals can now go on EMMA to review trades and determine if their bonds priced on market, or if they left money on the table.

Hospital Cash: How Much is Enough?

By |June 24, 2016|

Since the Great Recession, not-for-profit hospitals have hoarded cash as evidenced by improving rating agency liquidity ratios. Faced with a growing list of capital projects and mediocre investment returns, CFOs are now wondering how much cash to keep on hand.

Advisory Board: Stronger Ratings

By |June 20, 2016|

In an interview for The Advisory Board's Financial Leadership Council, HFA Partners discusses why hospital CFOs should pay attention to the qualitative elements of the rating processcan, and how organizations can build a culture of transparency with rating analysts.

MMD Hits Fourth Straight Record Low

By |June 13, 2016|

The Municipal Market Data 30-year tax-exempt bond yield continues to break record lows and reached 2.22% last Friday as investors scramble to pull cash out of equities and into fixed income. For hospitals thinking about issuing debt, the rally is becoming increasingly hard to ignore.

Tax Exempt Yields Hit All Time Lows

By |April 29, 2016|

The Municipal Market Data 30-year tax-exempt bond yield reached a new record low of 2.44% earlier this week, fueled by strong investor demand for safer assets and a dearth of supply as hospitals and other municipal borrowers refrain from taking on debt.

Hospital All-In Cost of Debt Lowest Ever

By |April 29, 2016|

Bond markets gods are smiling upon not-for-profit hospitals right now. The tax-exempt MMD benchmark is near its all-time low, and when combined with compressed credit spreads, hospitals can lock in the lowest cost of funds on record.

MCDC: Monumental Waste of Resources?

By |April 29, 2016|

The SEC's latest attempt at improving disclosure in the municipal bond markets is not getting much love. Comments from issuers and market groups at a recent industry panel showed frustration as participants questioned the MCDC initiative's costs and effectiveness.

HFMA: Hospitals Improved in FY2015

By |April 26, 2016|

In HFMA Healthcare Business News, HFA Partners comments on the preliminary not-for-profit hospital median report published by Moody's for FY2015. The report indicates an improvement in performance and less uncertainty about ACA.

MSRB Wants More Bank Placement Disclosure

By |April 14, 2016|

For hospitals and other not-for-profit borrowers who depend on the debt markets, bank direct placements continue to be a popular alternative to public bond offerings. The MSRB took notice and is looking for ways to force more disclosure.

S&P: Bank Loans Not a Negative for Borrowers

By |March 10, 2016|

In a report released yesterday, Standard & Poor's said the overwhelming majority of bank loans it reviewed in 2015 did not have a negative effect on borrowers' bond ratings, although disclosure is still critical.