by Jeffrey L Garceau

The Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB) is making an effort to provide resources for non-professional investors in municipal bonds, as well as state and local bond issuers and dealers.

Their publication, Ways to Buy Municipal Bonds, packs a lot of valuable information into a concise, five-page paper. MSRB breaks down four investment options; using a full service broker-dealer, hiring and investment manager, self-managed trading through an online account, and investing in bond mutual funds traded on stock exchanges. They break down how it works, and the costs, advantages, and disadvantages of each strategy.

A second publication is aimed at bond issuers and dealers. The 2016 Compliance Advisory for Brokers, Dealers and Municipal Securities Dealers, addresses compliance risks for dealers, helping them assess the adequacy of their own compliance programs. The publication identifies the MSRB rule addressing compliance with a brief explanation. Included are a list of recommended questions firms can ask themselves to ensure they have a clear understanding and have proper protocols in place.

Each of these publications are concise and valuable to their intended audience. The links provided will take you directly to the publication, but you can also visit the MSRB’s Education Center here.