Cumulative Probability of Default

Congratulations all around to our governor and legislators.

Based on the global credit default swap market for government debt (where basically odds are made on how likely it is that various entities will default on their debt), Illinois aced California out this month as the US state with the highest CPD.  Unfortunately, CPD stands for “cumulative probability of default.”

We nosed ahead with a 24.48 percent to California’s 24.30 percent.  Outside the USA, we’re just a hair away from overtaking Portugal (24.71%) and within easy reach of Iraq (28.72%).  Yes, THAT Iraq.

In other words, fellow citizens, the financial risk markets are saying Illinois’ odds of total collapse are about the same as drawing into a flush in a poker hand where you’re already holding four hearts.  We didn’t even make the top ten list last month when California was the only US state representing at 20.07%, so you can see how quickly we’re “progressing.”

Just a little perspective for you while waiting to hear how our elected financial savants are going to make those “serious cuts in the bureaucracy.”  The ones that will somehow fix six billion dollars in unpaid bills, a structural twelve billion dollar budget gap, and seventy-plus billion dollars in unfunded future obligations.

On the bright side, the salt air is bracing, the band is wonderful, and the deck chairs are very nicely arranged.  Enjoy the show, folks and remember — the situation is hopeless, but not serious!

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