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  • Fri, Dec. 2, 2:48 PM
    • S&P's index of municipal bonds fell 3.46% in November, writes Amey Stone in Barron's. That's the worst month since September 2008, when it fell 4.83%.
    • That interest rates rose sharply in November isn''t news, but S&P Dow Jones' J.R. Rieger says potential tax reform in which the highest marginal tax rate could be cut lowers the attractiveness of municipals.
    • Munis, says Rieger, are a retail-driven market, and thus sensitive to changes in sentiment and quick reversals in fund flows.
    • ETFs: MUB, NVG, IIM, NEA, NUV, NAD, PML, NZF, LEO, PZA, PMF, PMX, VMO, BFK, EVN, BLE, NXP, KTF, DSM, EIM, VGM, AFB, PMM, VKI, BKN, MVF
    | Fri, Dec. 2, 2:48 PM | 23 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 2, 12:03 PM
    • PIMCO Municipal Income Fund II (NYSE:PML) - $0.0650.
    • PIMCO California Municipal Income Fund II (NYSE:PCK) - $0.0473.
    • PIMCO New York Municipal Income Fund II (NYSE:PNF) - $0.0663.
    • PIMCO Municipal Income Fund III (NYSE:PMX) - $0.0623.
    • PIMCO California Municipal Income FUND III (NYSE:PZC) - $0.0600.
    • PIMCO New York Municipal Income Fund III (NYSE:PYN) - $0.0525.
    • Payable Dec. 1; for shareholders of record Nov. 14; ex-div Nov. 9.
    • Press Release
    | Wed, Nov. 2, 12:03 PM
  • Thu, Oct. 6, 9:55 AM
    • PIMCO New York Municipal Income Fund II (NYSE:PNF) - $0.0663.
    • PIMCO Municipal Income Fund III (NYSE:PMX) - $0.0623.
    • PIMCO California Municipal Income FUND III (NYSE:PZC) - $0.0600.
    • PIMCO New York Municipal Income Fund III (NYSE:PYN) - $0.0525.
    • Payable Nov. 1; for shareholders of record Oct. 13; ex-div Oct. 11.
    • Press Release
    | Thu, Oct. 6, 9:55 AM
  • Wed, Jun. 8, 11:52 AM
    • "We as municipal market participants should really be penalizing in some way, by almost not giving them any access to the market,” says Peter Hays, who oversees $119B as head of municipal bonds at BlackRock.
    • He notes Illinois is a state that refuses to pass a budget, and has the lowest funded ratio on their pension of any state.
    • The term "bond vigilantes" was invented with regards to investors forcing discipline on national governments, but they've been mostly absent from the $3.7T municipal market, despite a number of notable bankruptcy filings of late, as well as Puerto Rico's issues.
    • The lowest-rated U.S. state, Illinois this week announced plans to borrow $550M for capital projects on June 16. For now, investors are demanding an extra 183 basis points to hold Illinois 10-year debt vs. AAA munis. Still the yield is just 3.42% - that's 20 basis points lower than four years ago, when Illinois had a two-step higher credit rating than it does today.
    • ETFs: MUB, NVG, IIM, NUV, PML, NZF, LEO, PZA, PMF, NEA, PMX, VMO, BFK, EVN, BLE, NXP, KTF, DSM, EIM, VGM, AFB, NPM, PMM, VKI, BKN, MVF, NQM, TFI, MYI, IQI
    | Wed, Jun. 8, 11:52 AM | 50 Comments
  • Wed, Jun. 8, 11:52 AM
    • "We as municipal market participants should really be penalizing in some way, by almost not giving them any access to the market,” says Peter Hays, who oversees $119B as head of municipal bonds at BlackRock.
    • He notes Illinois is a state that refuses to pass a budget, and has the lowest funded ratio on their pension of any state.
    • The term "bond vigilantes" was invented with regards to investors forcing discipline on national governments, but they've been mostly absent from the $3.7T municipal market, despite a number of notable bankruptcy filings of late, as well as Puerto Rico's issues.
    • The lowest-rated U.S. state, Illinois this week announced plans to borrow $550M for capital projects on June 16. For now, investors are demanding an extra 183 basis points to hold Illinois 10-year debt vs. AAA munis. Still the yield is just 3.42% - that's 20 basis points lower than four years ago, when Illinois had a two-step higher credit rating than it does today.
    • ETFs: MUB, NVG, IIM, NUV, PML, NZF, LEO, PZA, PMF, NEA, PMX, VMO, BFK, EVN, BLE, NXP, KTF, DSM, EIM, VGM, AFB, NPM, PMM, VKI, BKN, MVF, NQM, TFI, MYI, IQI, MUA, OIA, MVT, XMPT, MEN, NPI, MYD, VKQ, NMO, PMO, MUE, MMU, NAD, NPP, BBK, EXD, NEV, BYM, NQS, DMF, MFL, BBF, MFM, KSM, MHD, EIV, MQY, MUH, BAF, MFT, MUS, MZF, PRB, MNP, EOT, NUW, DMB, DTF, MQT, NPF, BSD, MYF, NXR, CXH, NXQ, NIM, NMI, VTEB, FMN, VFL, PVI, RVNU, FMB
    | Wed, Jun. 8, 11:52 AM | 6 Comments
  • Nov. 12, 2015, 3:00 PM
    • There was a 20% jump in the number of requests for new municipal bond security identifiers, according to the CUSIP Issuance Trends Report - the first increase in five months.
    • While the start of Q4 and the beginning of a new fiscal year for many towns explains some of the jump, says CUSIP's Gerald Faulkner, the near-certain closing of ZIRP also plays a role.
    • It's a "dash for debt"  says S&P Capital IQ's Richard Peterson.
    • ETFs: MUB, IIM, NUV, PML, NIO, PZA, LEO, VMO, PMF, NEA, PMX, BFK, EVN, BLE, DSM, KTF, NQU, NXP, VGM, PMM
    | Nov. 12, 2015, 3:00 PM | 11 Comments
  • Sep. 9, 2015, 2:12 PM
    • General obligation bonds have been viewed as essentially default-proof forever, but part of Puerto Rico's five-year plan to restructure its $72B in debt includes the Commonwealth's GO paper.
    • These bonds were issued with a constitutional promise that the government would pay the debt service ahead of any other bills it has. "Unheard-of" is how the plan is described in a NYT article pondering the spillover effect to other GO debt should Puerto Rico successfully restructure.
    • Bond investors will no doubt put up a major fight, and Van Eck strategist Jim Colby expects a constitutional battle. Moody's Ted Hampton agrees, and sees a high probability of a long legal war.
    • Source: Barron's
    • ETFs: MUB, IIM, NUV, PML, NIO, PZA, LEO, VMO, NEA, PMF, PMX, BFK, EVN, BLE, DSM, KTF, NQU, NXP, VGM, PMM, AFB, MVF, VKI, EIM, NQM, NPM, TFI, OIA, BKN
    | Sep. 9, 2015, 2:12 PM | 7 Comments
  • Jul. 16, 2015, 3:39 PM
    | Jul. 16, 2015, 3:39 PM | 8 Comments
  • Oct. 10, 2012, 12:41 PM
    Not limited to mortgage REITs, panic grips another favorite of income investors, closed-end investment funds - notably those trading far above NAV for seemingly no other reason than their fat yield. The payouts on many of these are sustained by digging into capital rather than by earning a return on it. PGP -7.5%, PHK -7.8%, PHT -5.5%.
    | Oct. 10, 2012, 12:41 PM | 8 Comments
  • Oct. 8, 2012, 3:25 PM

    Blinded by fat yields, investors continue to bid closed-end funds far higher than their NAVs. 66% of taxable and 73% of muni-bond funds trade above NAV now, compared to just 30% a year ago, with often the funds with the highest distributions having the highest premiums. "We believe that an excessive premium for the fund is not likely to be sustainable," says Gabelli of one of its funds. Are investors listening?

    | Oct. 8, 2012, 3:25 PM | 35 Comments