Thursday, November 12, 2009

Study: Nine states risking California-style 'fiscal peril'

One of the authors of the Pew study was on the NewsHour last night, I looked for a transcript, nada.
From Money & Company:

If misery loves company, the Pew Center on the States public policy think-tank has some comforting words for Californians: Though our fiscal problems "are in a league of their own . . . some of the same factors driving California toward the brink of insolvency also are hurting an array of other states."

Do you feel better already?

A new study from the non-partisan Pew -- "Beyond California: States in Fiscal Peril" -- looks at nine states that the organization asserts aren’t far behind the Golden State in suffering havoc from the Great Recession. The nine, alphabetically: Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, Rhode Island and Wisconsin.

The Pew scored all 50 states based on six factors that "contributed substantially to California’s ongoing fiscal woes": high foreclosure rates; increasing joblessness; loss of state revenues; the relative size of budget gaps; legal obstacles to balanced budgets (specifically, a supermajority requirement for some or all tax increases or budget bills); and poor money-management practices.

California, of course, scored worst of all, but it was closely followed by Arizona, Rhode Island and Michigan, in that order....MORE

The hometown headlines are pretty grim:

NJ at risk of economic calamity, study says

Michigan will be among the poorest states for years, study says

Ariz. fiscal woes 2nd-worst
See also:
California debt binge shakes up muni bond market

Chanos says dump munis as distress mounts and ratings attacked (ABK; AGO; ALL; BRK.A; MBI)

The Approaching Muni Bond Implosion" and "Allstate Sells Municipals as Governments Run Deficits