Search results for: fiscal cliff

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State of Illinois budget gap — staggering, yet fixable

Illinois’ structural budget deficit is fixable, but will likely require tax increases in addition to spending cuts. The Illinois Supreme Court’s rejection of 2013 pension reform will make resolving the State’s pension burden more challenging, but not impossible.

Tagged with: Fixed Income, Muni Perspectives, Municipal Bonds

Causes and consequences of Puerto Rico’s sudden decline

The loss of normal market access over the last two years is finally starting to impair Puerto Rico’s ability to finance structural budgetary gaps. It’s difficult to determine ultimate recovery given dated financials, the heavy influence of politics and uncertainty about how various legal pledges will be treated under the fiscal adjustment plan or in court proceedings.

Tagged with: Municipal Bonds, U.S. Economy

Political and fiscal reality finally trump willingness in Puerto Rico

The Puerto Rican government’s willingness to pay debt service on time and in full was finally overcome by economic and fiscal realities. The shift from impairing only some public corporation [i.e., Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA)] debt to all Commonwealth debt was probably inevitable given the unwillingness to make draconian spending cuts, a lack of economic growth and dwindling liquidity across the entire Puerto Rican government complex, including the Government Development Bank (GDB).

Tagged with: Columbia Funds, Economy, Fixed Income, Muni Perspectives, Muni Perspectives Blog, Municipal Bonds

Detroit and Stockton are game changers for municipalities in fiscal distress

Contrary to past experience and conventional wisdom, general obligation bonds are not sacrosanct and very low recovery rates are possible. Pensioners and other politically favored classes are likely to be treated more kindly than bondholders.

Tagged with: Fixed Income, Investing, Muni Perspectives Blog

Release the doves

The Fed (and all central banks) is highly sensitive to shifts in inflation expectations by either consumers or the markets. The one-year TIP breakeven appears to be pricing in some deflationary pulse and is also pulling down longer term inflation expectations across the curve.

Tagged with: Economy, Global Economy, Investing

European equities – Yesterday’s bears become today’s bulls

We expect to see European earnings and economic growth expectations firming during the year. Even with the strong move in markets so far this year, European equity valuations are not unattractive in our view.

Tagged with: Global Economy, Global Investing, Global Perspectives

Pension weeds are choking the Garden State

A lagging economy, budget imbalances and rapidly growing long-term liabilities are driving credit rating agency downgrades in New Jersey. With pension and other post-employment benefits liabilities growing at an unsustainable rate, the state needs to pursue additional politically difficult decisions and reforms.
New Jersey remains investment grade, but the state is likely to see continued volatility and credit rating pressures.

Tagged with: Fixed Income, Global Perspectives, Municipal Bonds, Tax Strategies

A big bite of the Apple?

We believe that the investment-grade universe has an adequate capital structure that balances shareholders and debtholders, suggesting the credit cycle is in the middle of the expansion stage. While Apple’s rise in debt has significantly outpaced its earnings growth, this is an appropriate capital structure for a maturing company.

Tagged with: Investing

Chicago’s future is brighter than headlines suggest

Chicago has formidable pension challenges, but we believe Moody’s and the municipal market have overreacted. Chicago’s large, diverse and vibrant tax base, with a growing population in recent years, provides the necessary tools to manage its pension challenges over the long term.

Tagged with: Muni Perspectives, Muni Perspectives Blog

State and local government pension update

Concerns about pension plan solvency are widespread and attention-grabbing, yet unjustified in some cases. Pension funded ratios have declined at the state and local levels, though the cost of funding required contributions remains manageable.

Tagged with: Muni Perspectives, Muni Perspectives Blog, Municipal Bonds
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About Us

Columbia Threadneedle Investments is a leading global asset management group that provides a broad range of actively managed investment strategies and solutions for individual, institutional and corporate clients around the world. With more than 2,000 people, including over 450 investment professionals based in North America, Europe and Asia, we manage $503 billion†† of assets across developed and emerging market equities, fixed income, asset allocation solutions and alternatives.

††In U.S. dollars as of June 30, 2015. Source: Ameriprise Q2 Earnings Release. Includes all assets managed by entities in the Columbia and Threadneedle groups of companies. Contact us for more current data.