Bonds

Puerto Rico’s General Fund revenues in January and February were up 22.4% from the same months a year earlier.

Puerto Rico’s Department of the Treasury reported the news Thursday.

Puerto Rico Secretary of the Treasury Francisco Parés Alicea also said revenues in July through February were 6.3% higher than what the Puerto Rico Oversight Board had projected in its Jan. 27, 2022, revised fiscal plan.

The board’s original plan approved on April 23, 2021, had a lower projection for this period but the Treasury did not share this projection. For the whole fiscal year, the board’s January fiscal plan projected 11% more revenues for the current fiscal year than did its April fiscal plan.

In the current fiscal year from July to February, net revenues are up 14.5% compared to a year earlier.

The tax categories with the biggest haul July through February were the Sales and Use Tax with $1.52 billion, Individual Income Tax with $1.35 billion, Corporate Income Tax with $1.19 billion, and the Foreign Income (Law 154) Tax with $882 million. Total net revenues in the period were $7.17 billion.

The tax categories that exceeded projections the most July through February were Individual Income Taxes with $172 million, Corporate Taxes with $91 million, the “Other” category of taxes with $43 million, and the Rum Shipments Tax with $24 million.

The tax categories that exceeded their previous year’s performance July to February the most were Individual Income Taxes by $361 million or 39%, Corporate Income Taxes by $284 million or 28%, Sales and Use Tax by $174 million or 12%, the Withholding from Non-residents by $96 million or 38%, Sales and Use Tax by $76 million or 5%, and Motor Vehicles Tax by $37 million or 9.5%.

Bondholders pay attention to the government revenue figures because they signal the capacity of the territory’s government to make debt service payments on the recently restructured general obligation bonds and the earlier restructured Puerto Rico Sales Tax Finance Corp. (COFINA) bonds.

Parés Alicea noted that for the first time in many months February’s Sales and Use Tax revenues was lower than that of a year earlier. The retail and wholesale trade sector had a slowdown, he said. Still, the Sales and Use Tax revenues July through February are up $76 million compared to a year earlier.

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