No, come on, guess.
I'll give you a hint: the governor thinks a cartoon python may help matters.
CHICAGO, Nov. 26, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Morningstar, Inc. (MORN), a leading provider of independent investment research, today published its research report, "The State of State Pension Plans: A Deep Dive into Shortfalls and Surpluses," which analyzed current data for pension plans administered by all 50 states. Morningstar's municipal credit analysts found that based on two key funding metrics, the state of Wisconsin had the strongest-funded pension plan system, while Illinois had the weakest. [Unexpectedly!]
Additional key conclusions from Morningstar's review of state pension plan systems include:
- Wisconsin had the strongest-funded pension system; the state's funded ratio is 99.8 percent and the liability per resident is $23. Illinois had the weakest-funded system, with a 43.4 percent funded ratio and a liability of $6,505 per resident;
- Twenty-one states fall below Morningstar's fiscally sound threshold of a 70 percent "funded ratio;" Illinois has the lowest funded ratio;
- Seven states have an aggregate funded ratio of 90 percent or more, led by Wisconsin;
- Fourteen states have a UAAL under $1,500 per capita, Morningstar's threshold for "Good" unfunded liability levels. Wisconsin has the lowest UAAL per capita;
- Twenty states have a UAAL above $3,000 per capita; Alaska has the highest UAAL per capita, currently more than $10,000.
Yes, that's a press release from Morningstar to sell its investment research (as the whole point here is to get municipal bond investors to pay for this information). Thing is, you want to keep selling research to the bond market, you need to be accurate about your approach.
I saw this PR wire due to John Bury, who also noted the contrast between real analysis from a private entity seeking to find (saleable) truth and the clown show that is Illinois politics.