The News: Happy New Year
We hadn't expected to find any headlines worth relaying this morning, but did come upon one notable one - an outlook for (of all things) municipal bond insurers.
That sector was all but swept away this past year as most of its big players lost their top credit ratings and several even filed for or flirted with bankruptcy. Yet according to a comprehensive report in the Bond Buyer today, the last big firm still standing - Assured Guaranty - expects to see insurers recapture a one-third share of all new municipal issuance within five years. While that would still fall well shy of the 57 percent share held by insured bonds at the peak in 2005, it's more than triple the meager 8.7 percent fraction of new bonds that were insured this month, according to Thomson Reuters data.
The Bond Buyer's story also describes a number of new players working to enter (or in some cases, re-enter) the bond insurance market.
Insurers' Obit Could Be Premature [The Bond Buyer]
Pimco to Start Global Stock Fund Amid Equity Push [Bloomberg News]
E-mails inside AIG reveal executives struggling with growing crisis [Washington Post]
Landing a Job of the Future Takes a Two-Track Mind [WSJ]