U.S. muni bond sales to total $4 billion next week
NEW YORK, May 24 (Reuters) - U.S. municipal bond sales are expected to fall to $4 billion next week, shortened for Monday's Memorial Day holiday, from this week's revised $5.2 billion, according to Thomson Reuters estimates released on Friday. Negotiated sales next week are expected to total $3.06 billion in 62 issues, compared with $3.713 billion in 72 deals this week. The largest negotiated deal of the week is a $500 million New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority transportation revenue bond issue that is expected to price on Thursday through J.P. Morgan Securities. Columbus, Ohio, will sell $368.7 million of tax-exempt general obligation bonds that will refund outstanding taxable Build America and Recovery Zone Economic Development bonds. The deal, which is expected to price on Wednesday through Bank of America Merrill Lynch, is structured with serial maturities from 2014 through 2031, according to the preliminary official statement. Triple-A-rated Columbus is one of several issuers in the muni market refunding BABs after the U.S. government made the attractive rebates paid to issuers subject to across-the-board spending cuts known as sequestration. BABs were launched in 2009 as a part of the federal economic stimulus plan. The program, which gave issuers a 35 percent federal rebate on interest costs, terminated at the end of 2010. Competitive sales are expected to total just $891 million in 65 sales, down from $1.54 billion in 110 issues sold this week. California's Los Angeles Community College District will sell nearly $307 million of GO bonds in two-parts on Wednesday. The issues consist of $250 million of 2008 election bonds and $56.86 million of refunding bonds. Also on Wednesday, Arizona's Maricopa County Community College District will sell $151.1 million of GO bonds. The deal is structured with serial maturities from 2014 through 2027.
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