Archives: Arbitrage

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Someone Left the Crayons Out, and Now the Tax Lawyers Are Drawing Pictures (updated)

Timing, as they say, is everything. The tax-exempt bond rules are full of deadlines and sunsets, both before and after the issue date and before and after the project is finished. Click above for a diagram of how some of these rules work together. It’s by no means exhaustive, but certainly exhausting. Maybe you’ll find it … Continue Reading

SLGS! (For Now)

              Treasury has re-opened the sale of SLGS, now that the debt limit has been lifted through December 8. The SLGS window likely will close again around December 8, unless Congress takes further action. (Though the strictures of legal ethics and of logic would counsel us against insinuating that we … Continue Reading

SLGS Forever?

  For those of you keeping track, the SLGS window has been closed since March 8, 2017. With the recent discussions in Washington regarding a three-month debt limit increase, it is possible that the SLGS window will soon reopen, at least for a short time. (For prior coverage of the history of the SLGS window … Continue Reading

Treasury Clarifies Effective Date of Revised Definition of ‘Available Amount’

On July 18, 2016, the Treasury Department published final regulations on non-issue price arbitrage restrictions (the “Final Regulations”).  A copy of the Final Regulations is available here.  Since that time, the mid-afternoon naps of issuers, tax lawyers, and possibly Sean from Portlandia have been improved by reading my “comprehensive” blog post on the Final Regulations. … Continue Reading

Oh Great; More Issue Price Talk

Various industry groups and issuers from around the country have re-submitted comments applauding Treasury for including the proposed political subdivision regulations among those on the chopping block, following the President’s Executive Order 13789 to eliminate burdensome tax regulations. Not surprisingly, the style of most of those submissions has been simple and thematically consistent: “Good Job. … Continue Reading

Treasury: Proposed Political Subdivision Regulations are “Burdensome,” Issue Price Regulations are “Insignificant”

The noise that you just heard may be another blessed nail in the coffin of Treasury’s proposed regulations that would have made it more difficult for an entity to qualify as a political subdivision so that it can issue tax-exempt bonds on its own behalf. Treasury just issued Notice 2017-38, which sends 8 regulatory projects, including … Continue Reading

As the Countdown to the New Issue Price Regulations Continues, Let the Document Negotiations Begin!

The effective date of the new issue price regulations (Regulations) is less than a week away, and because of the need to discuss and plan for application of the new rules with issuers, underwriters and financial advisors for bonds that will be subject to the new rules, we are already gaining experience with documentation relating … Continue Reading

When Should an Issuer of Tax-Advantaged Bonds Use the Hold-the-Offering-Price Method to Establish the Issue Price of the Bonds?

Three score and thirteen years (and one day) after D-Day (June 7, 2017, for the non-history-buffs), the new regulations that prescribe the methods for determining the issue price of tax-advantaged bonds take effect.  Of the various methods for determining the issue price of tax-advantaged bonds, the hold-the-offering-price method is the only one that allows an … Continue Reading

Is the Pendulum of Bond Pricing Beginning to Swing Back Toward Discount Bonds? If So, We Need to Be Prepared for the Resulting Bond Yield Calculations

Premium bonds have been the choice of investors now for many years but is that preference beginning to shift in favor of discount bonds?  Discount bonds are appearing in bond structures with increasing regularity in recent months.  We lawyers leave that question for the underwriters and financial advisors as interest rates turn upward.  However, we … Continue Reading

NABL’s Model Issue Price Certificates – Some Observations

Joel Swearingen reported last week that the National Association of Bond Lawyers (“NABL”) recently released exposure drafts of model issue price certificates that reflect the final Treasury regulations on issue price that take effect for tax-advantaged bonds sold on or after June 7, 2017.  As Joel reported, the model issue price certificates cover the direct … Continue Reading

Model Issue Price Certificates Released

As Alexios wrote about a few weeks ago (here), we are in the middle of a dry spell when it comes to new guidance from the IRS.  Thankfully, the National Association of Bond Lawyers (“NABL”) recently released exposure drafts of several model issue price certificates (see here and here).  The draft certificates are the product … Continue Reading

Report from TSLI – What Can We Expect in the Near Term from the IRS?

Last week I attended the NABL Tax and Securities Law Institute, which always provides valuable insights from representatives of Treasury and the IRS.  Vicky Tsilas, Chief, Branch 5, Financial Institutions and Products, was a panelist for Tax Hot Topics and gave a very interesting status report on the 2016-2017 Guidance Plan (first reported on here … Continue Reading

2016 Year-End Review

Despite an increase in the federal funds rate by the Federal Open Market Committee in December, municipal bond interest rates throughout 2016 were (and still are) extremely low when compared to historic rates.  As a result, the volume of municipal bond issues reached an all-time high in 2016. As discussed below, the Treasury Department released … Continue Reading

The New Issue Price Regulations – “Bought Deals,” Bored Bidders, and Other Problems

As you have heard, and as we noted last week, Treasury and the IRS recently released final regulations that tell issuers how to calculate the “issue price” of tax-advantaged bonds that are issued for money. The regulations don’t take effect until June 7, 2017, so we can spend some time luxuriating in their nuances and … Continue Reading

Final Arbitrage Regulations – The Good and the Not-So-Good Changes to the Working Capital Rules

The 2013 proposed arbitrage regulations included significant changes to the working capital financing rules, including the first rules for long-term working capital financings.  The proposed rules have been finalized in the recently issued final arbitrage regulations (discussed here) (“Final Regulations”), with some changes but without one very significant suggested change.  This post summarizes the important changes that … Continue Reading

Final Arbitrage Regulations Require “Look Through” to a Grantee’s Use of Bond Proceeds: A Big “So What?”

From time to time, issuers will use bond proceeds to make grants to accomplish a governmental purpose. For example, a State bond issuer may make grants to various counties and cities to help with the cost of local transportation improvements. Under the arbitrage regulations (Reg. 1.148-6(d)(4)), the bond proceeds are treated as spent once an issuer … Continue Reading
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