Weekly Market Update


Thursday, September 7, 2017

The Trump administration announced Tuesday that it would end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program through which about 800,000 undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children have gained both the right to work and temporary protection against deportation. The administration said it would initiate a wind down of the program over the next six months and urged Congress to pass a replacement. The Department of Homeland Security will stop processing any new applications for the program but will honor existing work permits until the shorter of expiration or two years. Higher education leaders who support DACA, such as USC president C. L. Max Nikias, have expressed deep concerns about the effects of DACA's termination and called for legal protection for thousands of students whose citizenship status is jeopardized. Nearly 2,000 national leaders, including eight governors, signed a letter urging the president to preserve DACA.

In Other News

  • Hurricane Harvey struck the Gulf Coast of Texas last Friday as a Category 4 storm. Schools directly in the path of the hurricane have updated their students and staff regarding their operating status and the physical condition of their campuses. Some Texas college students have struggled to make it back to school because of flooding, and college leaders say they are working with students who have been affected the storm.
  • Purdue University announced an initiative aimed at making a college degree more affordable. The "Degree in 3" program allows students to complete a College of Liberal Arts degree in three years, which the school says could save in-state students more than $9,000 and non-resident students more than $18,000. Purdue President Mitch Daniels says the move makes the changes "without reducing the requirements or the quality of the degree."
  • Carolinas HealthCare System and UNC Health Care announced Tuesday morning that they plan to merge, forming one of the largest hospital systems in the United States. Organization leaders said the merger would help boost affordability and access for patients while expanding services across the state. The deal may receive extra scrutiny from the FTC due to the size of the merged entity.
  • The health insurer Aetna is facing criticism for revealing the HIV status of potentially thousands of customers after it sent out a mailing in which information about prescription HIV drug orders was visible through the envelope's clear window. Nonprofits often have access to consumers' private information, placing a burden of responsibility on boards and management.
  • Stanley Fischer, vice-chair of the U.S. central bank, resigned a year before his term was due to end, citing "personal reasons." Fischer's resignation leaves four of the seven seats on the Fed Board vacant.

Rating Agency Update

  • Moody's assigned Aa3 to University of North Carolina at Charlotte's Series 2017 General Revenue Bonds. The outlook is stable.
  • Moody's assigned A3 to University of New England's Series 2017B Revenue Bonds and maintained A3 on the University's Series 2017A Bonds. The outlook is stable.
  • Moody's downgraded Concord University's rating to Baa3 from Baa2. The outlook is negative.
  • Samp;P assigned AA- to Colorado State University's 2017A Revenue Refunding Bonds. The outlook is stable.
  • Samp;P assigned A+ to the Colorado State University's Series 2017A&B System Enterprise Revenue Refunding Bonds. The outlook is stable.
  • Samp;P assigned A+ to University of North Carolina at Charlotte's Series 2017 Revenue Bonds. The outlook is stable.
  • Samp;P assigned BBB+ to Ringling College of Art & Design's Series 2017 Educational Facility Revenue and Refunding Bonds. The outlook is stable.