Illinois’ A Bust

Commentary, News

Danny Riley, MrTopStep

First, I want to say, I am a Chicago guy. In no way shape or form will that ever change. I love the city, the lake, the restaurants and the rich culture. That said, I coined a saying a long time ago that says. ‘people have choices.’ I don’t care if you’re rich or not, but if you own a 6 bedroom home on the lake, your kids are grown up, and you’re paying $150,000 a year in taxes, I think its silly… Even if you have the money!

In the same respect, if you have a small home and you have sat back and watched your taxes double or triple, its the same thing. The idiots downstate run by Jay Robert “J. B.” Pritzker will never, and I mean never, be able to pay the states debt. All they come up with is how to add more taxes on everything!!!


State: $152.6 billion

  • State pensions: $82.9 billion (note: this is the only type included in the $83 billion figure)
  • State pension bonds: $15.5 billion
  • State retiree health benefits: $54.2 billion
  • Local: $50.8 billion
  • Local pensions: $38.2 billion
  • Local pension and benefit bonds: $1.9 billion
  • Local retiree health benefits: $10.7 billion

This is the first report to give a complete picture of Illinois’ total retirement debt. All told, state and local governments in Illinois owe more than $203 billion for pensions and retiree health insurance. This is more than $41,000 in retirement debt for every Illinois household.

What Kind of Deal Was This?

Did you know that if you put up $500,000 when the city sold the parking meters (if you were able to get into the deal) you basically make $250,000 a year for the rest of your life? The city of Chicago has 36,000 parking meters. In 2008, it sold them on a 75 year lease for over one billion dollars. The buyers were led by Morgan Stanley, and the state-owned investment arm of Abu Dhabi ended up owning a large share.

The final amount of the bid was $1,156,500,000, a lump sum to be paid to the city of Chicago for seventy-five years worth of parking meter revenue. And lets not forget, in 2005, Chicago sold rights to the Chicago Skyway for $1.7 billion, and just 10 years after that it was resold again, this time for $2.8 billion.

Like I said… people have choices! It’s never going to get better in Illinois. Most homes have never gotten back to their pre-credit crisis level, and they never will. I am not saying Florida is for everyone, there are a lot of ohter places to live, but if your waiting for something good to happen in Illinois, it just isn’t going to happen.

As always, please use protective buy and sell stops when trading futures and options.

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Danny Riley (3536 Posts)

Danny Riley has worked in the futures and options industry for 38 years, including the CBOT’s bond room, where he worked for several of the Market Wizards. He went on to build the largest volume desk in the S&P 500 Index Futures, serving some of the largest banks and hedge funds, the UBS program trading business, and some of the world's top individual traders. As a leader and co-creator of the MrTopStep IM-Pro Trading Room, he shares trading ideas and breaking market news live from the floor with our other professional traders and new traders eager to experience the power of collective intelligence. Join us today and get the edge only social trading can give you.

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