Stanford sells $143 million in bonds

April 9, 2012, 2:05 a.m.

Stanford University recently issued $143 million of debt in the form of taxable bonds with a 30-year maturity, according to Bloomberg.


Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley managed the offering. University debt will offer a yield of 4.013 percent, 70 basis points above Treasury notes of the same maturity.


The issuance, which looks to take advantage of high demand for corporate bonds in the highest ratings categories, followed similar bond sales by other elite universities, including the University of Pennsylvania and Northwestern University. Stanford and other universities customarily sell tax-free debt in the municipal market.


Fitch Ratings and Moody’s Investors Service both assigned a AAA grade to Stanford’s taxable debt, the highest such rating and indicative of a minimal level of risk.


“Stanford’s ‘AAA’ rating continues to reflect its consistently strong financial performance and vast resource base, industry-leading fundraising activity and outstanding student demand,” said a Fitch Ratings press release.


“This bond issue was a matter of routine,” said Lisa Lapin, assistant vice president for university communications, in an email to The Daily.


Stanford recently concluded The Stanford Challenge, a five-year fundraising initiative that raised $6.2 billion in pledges for the University. The Stanford Management Company, responsible for managing the University’s endowment, has also returned to profitability since the 2007-09 economic downturn.

— Marshall Watkins

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