Hartsfield-Jackson saves $73.6 million in bond refunding deal

Filed in News by on April 4, 2014

In a move not unlike refinancing a mortgage to obtain a lower interest rate, airport officials refunded $877 million of bonds originally sold to finance capital improvements in late March. The bonds were refunded at a 4.003% effective interest rate, which is expected to yield a present value savings of $73.6 million for the Airport over the life of the bonds.

“As this sale demonstrates, Hartsfield-Jackson is a fiscally sound and valuable asset for the City of Atlanta,” said Hartsfield-Jackson Interim General Manager Miguel Southwell in his April 4 announcement. “Not only did we just complete a successful refunding of our bonds with a significant savings, but this week we were recognized for the 16th year in a row as the world’s busiest airport.”

Moody’s Investor Service had recently upgraded the Airport’s senior lien general revenue bonds to Aa3 from A1 and affirmed its A1 rating on the airport passenger facility charge and subordinate lien revenue bonds. The Aa3 rating applies to the airport general revenue refunding bonds. These upgrades are attributed to the airport’s financial and operational strengths and contributed to the success of the sale. The refunding sold in three series.

“The City of Atlanta is pleased by how well our debt was received,” said City of Atlanta Chief Financial Officer Jim Beard. “We believe that this is reflective of the leadership provided by Mayor Kasim Reed and the strong position of both Atlanta and Hartsfield-Jackson in the global marketplace.”

Siebert Brandford Shank & Co., a minority owned firm, is the primary underwriter of the bonds. SunTrust Robinson Humphrey is also serving as a senior manager.


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