Wall Street Tells Connecticut: Keep the Momentum Going
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont is announcing Connecticut’s continued momentum following a successful debt refinancing through the Office of the State Treasurer Friday. Connecticut was able to refinance debt at one of the lowest relative interest rates the state has seen in years. Investors relayed to state leaders that they believe that all actions proposed by Governor Ned Lamont, Treasurer Shawn Wooden and the budget approved by Democrats in the General Assembly have led to a positive response by investors.
“Just like when you apply for a credit card, the better your credit, the lower the interest rate you will pay,” Governor Lamont said. “Connecticut has a better credit score today as a result of our collective actions and responsible long-term financial planning.”
Further, State Treasurer Shawn Wooden, with support from Connecticut’s Department of Economic and Community Development, led by Commissioner David Lehman, have showcased the steps the state is taking to move Connecticut forward to investors all over the country.
“The incredible results from yesterday’s bond sale once again demonstrates that Connecticut is moving in the right direction,“ Treasurer Wooden said. “It’s clear the positive response from investors points to Connecticut having a stronger future than it has in the recent past. Together, working with the governor and the legislature – from restructuring our teachers’ pensions, to shoring up our rainy day fund and making smarter long-term debt investments – each step we take continues to move this state forward to fiscal stability and greater economic growth. Even with yesterday’s strong results we know that there is much more work to do and I look forward to continue working with our partners in the state.”
“The bond market’s affirmation of Connecticut’s path towards future fiscal stability is very encouraging,” Commissioner Lehman said. “Governor Lamont’s efforts to control spending and reduce our reliance on bonding is good for businesses and taxpayers, and the positive reaction from the marketplace shows we are on the right track to getting our fiscal house in order and restoring confidence in Connecticut.”
Since February, when Governor Lamont unveiled his first budget and policy proposals, Connecticut has seen a string of extremely positive economic developments:
- February 12, 2019: Governor Lamont announces the “debt diet.” At the time, he said, “To trim costs down the road, we have to reduce our bloated capital spending starting right now.”
- February 20, 2019: Governor Lamont’s proposed budget includes collaborative plan with Treasurer Wooden to restructure the Connecticut Teachers’ Retirement plan.
- March 19, 2019: Standard & Poor’s improves the outlook on Connecticut’s credit rating from “stable” to “positive” marking the first positive outlook or rating improvement by a rating agency in 19 years.
- March 28: 2019: Treasurer Wooden executes $1 billion General Obligation bond sale with $828 million in retail orders alone – a record for the state – and over $4 billion in institutional orders.
- April 24, 2019: Institutional and retail investors order $1.3 billion in UConn General Obligation Bonds, more than five times the supply available showing incredible interest in Connecticut’s future.
- May 28, 2019: Governor Lamont signs into law an increase of the minimum wage in Connecticut, increasing the rate to $15 per hour, and it is expected to rise in future years, providing solid wage growth for families across the state. The increase of the minimum wage will spark economic activity throughout the state.
- June 25, 2019: Governor Lamont signs historic Paid Family and Medical Leave Act into law providing working families across Connecticut with vital support in the event of a family or health event.
- June 26, 2019: Governor Lamont signs balanced, growth-focused state budget into law. The budget includes the “debt diet,” no income or sales tax rate increases, and grows the state’s rainy day fund to its largest size in the state’s history. The spending plan also cut a business entity tax, and phases out the capital base tax in the coming years. The budget also includes $900 million taxpayer savings relating to the teacher’s retirement plan, which was proposed by Treasurer Wooden.
- July 9, 2019: Kroll Bond Ratings improves the outlook on Connecticut’s credit rating from “negative” to “stable,” marking the second positive credit development in four months.
- July 25, 2019: Connecticut general obligation bonds refinanced at lower interest rate, signaling confidence from investors around the country. The lower interest rate saves taxpayers $42.9 million over the next decade.