Market Commentaries

Municipal Market Minefield Maneuvering in Perspective

January 2012

Last month I was invited to participate in an hour-long discussion hosted and aired live by InvestmentNews, Muni Markets: Maneuvering Through the Minefield. The content was wide-ranging and lively. Over the past few years, we have written about a numbe …


Bond Rally Continues

January 2012

The bond market’s powerful December rally continued unabated into the first month of the year. Bond yields declined to near historic lows in both the U.S. Treasury and municipal bond sectors. The 10-year Treasury yield fell to 1.80% on January 31st ver …


Widest Municipal Yield Spread in Two Years, Bankruptcy Update

November 2011

Municipal bond prices held up surprisingly well during the month, despite an increased supply of new municipal bond issues following months of low issuance.Municipal yield spread against Treasuries widest in two yearsThe 10 year, “A” rated MMD Index bo …


Municipal Market Progresses Unevenly

October 2011

The municipal bond market showed more signs of progress in October, albeit unevenly – a persistent market narrative that creates opportunities for the disciplined and informed.State revenues growing despite property tax declinesThe macro economic pictu …


Yield Search Favors Municipal Market

September 2011

After August outflows, the municipal bond market turned bullish once again in September with four weeks in a row of bond fund inflows – and the last week more than doubling the inflows of the previous week. The month also saw a couple of true superlati …


The Effect of a U.S. Rating Downgrade

September 2011

After August outflows, the municipal bond market turned bullish once again in September with four weeks in a row of bond fund inflows – and the last week more than doubling the inflows of the previous week. The month also saw a couple of true superlati …


U.S. Downgrade Domino Threat

August 2011

The prevailing August municipal bond market story was the threat posed by the U.S. rating downgrade. The improving state tax situation and the search for better yields also led municipal bond market news in the past month.Wholesale municipal rating dow …


Mid-Year Municipal Credit Update

July 2011

In this commentary, we will summarize where municipal credit quality has been, where we believe it is today, and what our clients should expect over the near term investment horizon. The municipal market began the year with a tumultuous first quarter, …


The End Is Near

May 2011

What Will it Mean to Municipal Bonds in 2011 and Beyond? As the economy expands, it is becoming clearer that we are nearing the end of the “easy money” policy that the Federal Reserve has pursued over the past few years. So what can we expect once the …


Calmer, Bullish Municipal Market: Opportunities Amongst Problems

May 2011

Municipal bond prices continued their upward move during May resulting in lower yields across the maturity spectrum at month end. A calmer tone to our marketplace has set in over the past two months as much of the selling hysteria earlier in the year h …


Municipal Bond Supply & Demand Imbalance

April 2011

The municipal bond market through the first three months of 2011 was particularly choppy, culminating in March with one of the most muddled trading environments we’ve experienced in quite some time. To discuss March’s performance, it’s important to exa …


“A Bond Market In Turmoil” Municipal Market Update

January 2011

Michelle Bernardi Landis summarizes the key points of the President’s Letter below. There have been many news stories recently regarding the municipal bond market and its impending debt crisis. Most of them have been unnerving and intimidating. Ma …


Municipal Market Attractive for Some, Challenging for Others

January 2011

Municipal bond yields ended the month at higher levels than where they began the month, resulting in a negative monthly total return number for most portfolios. This decline in portfolio value was more pronounced on higher duration portfolios and bond …


Continuing Municipal Bond Market Volatility

December 2010

Volatility in the municipal market was significant during the last quarter and we expect it to continue into the foreseeable future. The fourth quarter of 2010 was brutal period for total return oriented municipal bond investors. The Barclays Capital M …


Municipal Bond Market Volatility

November 2010

Municipal bond prices endured a considerable sell off during the month of November, before showing a rebound leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday. Four factors are key to understanding this volatility:Treasury weakness. Pronounced weakness in the Tre …