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December 18, 2008

Atlantic Yards Report Double-Dose Financial Report

Atlantic Yards Report

Two items on Forest City's gyrations in trying to figure out how to continue to build a publicly financed stadium in the midst of a World financial meltdown:

A good way to increase cash flow is to delay paying for public properties while receiving public subsidies more rapidly.

Indirect subsidies: how Forest City pursues more aid (and can they revise the City Funding Agreement?)

So, now we know what Forest City Enterprises CEO Chuck Ratner meant when he told investment analysts in April that "we still need more" subsidies.

I commented that such a request might generate pushback from some elected officials. It did, and since then, the hemorrhaging of city and state budgets means that direct appropriations are very unlikely.

However, as the New York Observer reminded us this week, there are more ways to skin a budget, including:

  • a delay in paying the Metropolitan Transportation Authority the $100 million (not $1 billion) it pledged to pay for the railyard
  • additional subsidies boosting the affordable housing
  • a speed-up in the city's pace to deliver the $100 million pledged

Will Gramercy Capital, its stock tanking, easily renegotiate loan with Forest City Ratner?

A loan made by Gramercy Capital Corporation to Forest City Ratner is coming due. Will FCR be able to pay? Will the loan be renegotiated? Stay tuned!

The company that lent Forest City Ratner nearly $153 million to buy property in the Atlantic Yards footprint has seen its stock price tank, as has the stock of FCR's parent Forest City Enterprises, as it awaits repayment of $177 million it dearly needs.

While the stock of Gramercy Capital Corporation reached $28.51 for its 52-week high, it closed yesterday at $1.32. In October, it suspended its third-quarter dividend to save $32.3 million. (FCE acted similarly last week.) The company might be a little antsy about getting repaid promptly and in full.

Posted by steve at December 18, 2008 6:34 AM