Sunday, November 30, 2008


Bloomberg's Joe Myslak tees off on the use of interest rate swaps by local school districts in Pennsylvania. Gotta love anyone who likes to read statements on bond ratings. He does not name the Pennsylvania school district he found using swaps just recently in a bond issuance.

Given how much trouble interest rate swaps have gotten investors into, and how much it has cost some to get out of, it ought to be a no-brainer for Pennsylvania to make this type of municipal debt financing illegal. According to Myslak, it was only made legal in 2003. Not quite sure the financial history written since 2003 is anything worth saving.

But how do you get legislators to outlaw something they probably know nothing about? Raises an interesting question as to who sponsored the legislation that must have made swaps legal for municipal finance. Now I rarely ask questions that are not rhetorical... but does anyone know the history of whatever legislation allowed interest rate swaps in Pennsylvania?


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