CAM High Yield Weekly Insights
Fund Flows & Issuance: According to Wells Fargo, flows week to date were -$0.5 billion and year to date flows stand at -$0.6 billion. New issuance for the week was $5.0 billion and year to date HY is at $91.6 billion.
(Company Report) Frontier Communications Expands Broadband in Wisconsin
- Frontier Communications announced that it has made enhanced broadband service available to an additional 8,100 households in Wisconsin. Frontier is leveraging the FCC’s Connect America Fund (CAF) program to bring broadband to approximately 5,000 households in CAF-eligible census blocks while expanding its overall service and reach to approximately 3,100 more households throughout Wisconsin.
- “Through ongoing network investments, Frontier is providing broadband and faster speeds to residents,” John Van Ooyen, Frontier Director of Operations said. “We have been aggressively deploying and upgrading our broadband service and look forward to serving more residents.”
- The deployments are made possible through a combination of Frontier’s capital investment and the CAF. The FCC established the CAF in 2011 to facilitate broadband deployment to the millions of Americans living in rural areas without access to broadband infrastructure. As of 2016, Frontier began receiving approximately $30 million a year from the CAF to expand and upgrade the company’s network to 77,000 locations in Wisconsin by the end of 2020.
(Fierce Cable) Charter sued for selling personal customer data without consent
- According to the St. Louis Record, which obtained a copy of the Eastern District of Missouri court complaint filed on April 4, subscriber “A. Michael” said that between 2011 and 2013, Charter sold information such as names and addresses to unknown companies without customer consent.
- Just as Comcast, AT&T and Verizon stated in similar messaging, Charter said the recent overturning by the Republican-led Congress of Obama-era FCC rules regulating ISP privacy does not change its position.
- “Protecting the privacy of our consumers is one of our most important responsibilities as a broadband provider,” Charter said. “Recent activity by Congress does not change, or weaken, Charter’s commitment to the protection of our customers’ online privacy, or our rigorous privacy practices and policies. To be clear it also does not change the way in which Charter collects, uses or shares customer information.”
(New York Times) Trump Administration to Pay Health Subsidies Disputed by House
- The Trump administration says it is willing to continue paying subsidies to health insurance companies under the Affordable Care Act even though House Republicans say the payments are illegal because Congress never authorized them.
- The statement sends a small but potentially significant signal to insurers, encouraging them to stay in the market.
- The Affordable Care Act requires insurers to reduce deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs for certain low-income consumers. The “cost-sharing” subsidies, which total $7 billion a year, compensate insurers for these discounts.
- House Republicans sued the Obama administration, saying that the spending — in the absence of an appropriations law — was unconstitutional. A Federal District Court judge agreed and ordered a halt to the payments, but suspended her order to allow the government to appeal.
- The Trump administration has not clearly indicated its position on the appeal. Asked to clarify, the Department of Health and Human Services sent a written statement on Monday: “The precedent is that while the lawsuit is being litigated, the cost-sharing subsidies will be funded. It would be fair for you to report that there has been no policy change in the current administration.”
(Moody’s) Moody’s upgrades DaVita to Ba2; outlook is stable
- Moody’s Investors Service upgraded the ratings of DaVita, Inc. including the Corporate Family Rating to Ba2 from Ba3 and the Probability of Default Rating to Ba2-PD from Ba3-PD. Moody’s also upgraded DaVita’s senior secured credit facilities to Baa3 from Ba1 and its senior unsecured notes to Ba3 from B1. Lastly, Moody’s affirmed DaVita’s Speculative Grade Liquidity Rating of SGL-1. The outlook is stable.
- The upgrade of DaVita’s Corporate Family Rating to Ba2 reflects Moody’s expectation that the company will benefit from US dialysis patient population growth of approximately 4% and stabilization of its integrated care business. Moody’s expects that DaVita will maintain adjusted debt to EBITDA in the mid-to-high 3 times range even in the face of several business uncertainties relating to biosimilars and the availability of charitable premium assistance.