The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority disclosed yesterday that it has selected the management group for its $275 million bond offering that is expected later this month.
An official at tje authority, who spoke on condition that he not be named, said the MBTA's management group for approximately the next two years will consist of First Boston Corp.; Goldman, Sachs & Co.; Bea, Stearns & Co.; W.R. Lazard, Laidlaw & Mead Inc.; Lehman Brothers; Merrill Lynch & Co.; J.P. Morgan Securities Inc.; Morgan Stanley & Co.; Prudential Securities Inc.; and Smith Barney, Harris Upham & Co.
The deal is expected to be priced Nov. 19. The 24 firms who were interviewed by the authority are eligible to be part of the deal's selling group, the authority source said.
The firms selected for the management group had until 4 p.m. yesterday to submit hypothetical bids for book-running responsibilities on the deal. "We've asked them to answer two questions: The costs os issuance and what is their marketing plan for the $275 million?" the official said.
Some of the 36 securities firms and bank subsidiaries that responded to the authority's request for qualifications questioned the intricacies of the process. For example, a source at one Wall Street investment bank said that the request for bids had been a surprise. Underwriters are routinely named after the completion of the interview process.
"We're very miffed because we really put in a lot of effort on behalf of the authority, and now they come back with 'Congratulations, you're eligible to bid,'" said the source, who also asked not to be named.
For local banks and firms, the process also proved frustrating. No local firms made the final cut.
The authority finances the transportation system around metropolitan Boston, using state subsidies to help meet debt service costs.
One Massachusetts banker accused the administration of Gov. William F. Weld of only paying lip service to investing in Massachusetts. "By this list, they're obiviously investing in New York," he said. "All the profits are going into the New York economy."