Lisa's Feed
Aug 13, 2014

Start of Detroit bankruptcy trial delayed a week

By Lisa Lambert

(Reuters) – U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes on Wednesday pushed the start of the trial on Detroit’s exit from the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history to Aug. 29 from Aug. 21, with opening statements scheduled for the following Tuesday, Sept. 2.

The first day of the trial, which falls on the Friday before the Labor Day federal holiday, will address objections from creditors who do not have lawyers.

Aug 12, 2014

Water deal could force another delay in Detroit bankruptcy trial

By Lisa Lambert and Karen Pierog

(Reuters) – A federal judge could once again push back the start date for the trial on Detroit’s exit from the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history after some creditors said on Tuesday a possible settlement is snarling key components of the restructuring plan.

The complicated settlement rests on a tender offer for $5.2 billion of the city’s water and sewer revenue bonds. The deadline for bondholders to tender their debt voluntarily for repurchase is Aug. 21, the same day the trial is to begin, with the final settlement possibly becoming firm weeks later, in the middle of the proceeding.

Aug 11, 2014

US SEC charges Kansas for not telling investors of pension problem

WASHINGTON, Aug 11 (Reuters) – The U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission said on Monday it has charged Kansas with
fraud for not properly disclosing funding problems with its
public pension when it held bond offerings in 2009 and 2010.

It marks the third time the federal regulator has taken
action against a state for violating municipal bond disclosure
rules.

Aug 7, 2014

U.S. municipal bond funds post another week of inflows -Lipper

WASHINGTON, Aug 7 (Reuters) – Demand for U.S. municipal
bonds has remained strong throughout the summer, a key
investment season, with municipal bond funds posting $16.6
million in net inflows for the week ended Aug. 6, according to
Lipper data.

That followed net inflows of $418.6 million and $686.2
million the previous two weeks and brought the four-week moving
average to inflows of $319.8 million, according to Lipper, a
Thomson Reuters company.

Aug 6, 2014

U.S. appeals court says Baltimore pension reform legal

WASHINGTON, Aug 6 (Reuters) – The U.S. Court of Appeals for
the Fourth Circuit upheld a major reform made to Baltimore’s
police and firefighter pension plan on Wednesday, shedding light
on how judges may view the recent raft of changes in public
retirement funds around the country.

The court vacated a previous decision that the reform had
violated the U.S. Constitution’s contract clause, and also
decided the change was permissible under Maryland’s state
constitution.

Jul 28, 2014

Hold-out creditor argues for dismissal of Detroit bankruptcy case

WASHINGTON, July 28 (Reuters) – One of the biggest hold-out
creditors in Detroit’s bankruptcy will argue next month for a
dismissal of the historic case to lead to more equitable
treatment of all the city’s creditors, according to a report
obtained by Reuters on Monday.

Detroit’s plan to adjust $18 billion of debt has been
approved by most, but not all, of the city’s unsecured
creditors, bringing to center stage the possibility of a ‘cram
down,’ where the plan could be imposed on objecting creditors if
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes determines it is fair and
feasible.

Jul 25, 2014

Detroit’s revised bankruptcy plan sheds light on bonds, monitor

July 25 (Reuters) – Detroit released a revised debt
adjustment plan on Friday that details the role of a
post-bankruptcy monitor and sets up a reserve fund to possibly
enhance recoveries for certain creditors.

The fifth revision of the plan filed in U.S. Bankruptcy
Court creates a litigation trust related to Detroit’s lawsuit
seeking to void $1.45 billion of pension certificates of
participation (COPs) sold in 2005 and 2006.

Jul 25, 2014

Detroit revs up for approval of bankruptcy plan

July 25 (Reuters) – Detroit could be on the fast track to
complete the final, crucial phase of its historic bankruptcy
case, as settlements with key creditors line up and city workers
and retirees demonstrate overwhelming support for cost-saving
retirement benefit changes.

While a small, hard-core group of creditors continues to
hold out for a better deal, the support among workers and
retirees may help push through the city’s plan to adjust $18
billion of debt and exit the biggest Chapter 9 municipal
bankruptcy in U.S. history. It has moved the possibility of a
“cram down,” where a bankruptcy plan is imposed on objecting
creditors, to center stage.

Jul 22, 2014

Detroit workers, retirees vote in favor of city’s debt plan

By Karen Pierog and Lisa Lambert

(Reuters) – Detroit’s city workers and retirees overwhelmingly agreed to accept the city’s debt adjustment plan, according to results filed late Monday, potentially clearing the way for the struggling city to exit bankruptcy in the next few months.

Documents filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court show the city’s current and retired police and fire employees, along with other active and retired city workers, will accept pension reductions to help adjust $18 billion in debt in the largest-ever U.S. municipal bankruptcy case. Most bondholders rejected the plan, along with insurers backing some of the debt.

Jul 21, 2014

Detroit bankruptcy plan is feasible, but concerns remain -report

July 21 (Reuters) – Detroit’s plan to adjust $18 billion of
debt and exit the biggest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history
is feasible, according to an expert witness report that also
expressed concern that the costs of its rapid restructuring may
hurt the city’s ability to fix its “broken operations.”

Martha Kopacz, a senior managing director at Phoenix
Management Services in Boston, who was chosen by U.S. Bankruptcy
Judge Steven Rhodes in April as an expert witness in the case,
concluded in her July 18 report obtained by Reuters on Monday
that the plan’s revenue, expense and payment assumptions are
reasonable.