Pennsylvania + Wall


Pennsylvania + Wall provides commentary on a broad range of current financial, economic and regulatory reform topics. The views expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of SIFMA.

December 15, 2014

Expert Insights: The Outlook for the US Economy in 2015

Diane Swonk - Chair, Economic Advisory RoundtableSIFMA's Economic Advisory Roundtable is composed of chief U.S. economists from several SIFMA member firms. Twice per year, the Roundtable publishes the results of a detailed survey on the U.S. economic outlook and rates forecasts.

Yesterday, the Roundtable released its "U.S. End-Year 2014 Economic Outlook," forecasting that the U.S. economy will grow at a 2.3% rate in full-year 2014 and 3.0% in 2015. The following is a Q&A with Diane Swonk, Chief Economist for Mesirow Financial Holdings, Inc. and Chair of the Economic Advisory Roundtable..... Read more...

December 10, 2014

The State of Our Industry

By Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr.

Hearing - Testimony - ViewpointSIFMA held its annual State of the Industry media briefing on December 4, 2014 in NYC. In this review of the past year, we examined the role the capital markets play in the nation’s economic recovery; our efforts around cybersecurity, equity market structure reform, and preserving investor choice; and our policy agenda for the coming year.

How did the capital markets perform in 2014?
On the whole, 2014 was a good year for our industry and the clients we serve: our capital markets provided approximately 75% of financing for businesses in the U.S., and we matched retail and institutional investors with those sellers in the marketplace..... Read more...

December 09, 2014

Muni Markets: Let the Sun Shine In

By David Cohen

 Municipal BondsSIFMA believes that tremendous strides have been made in improving market transparency for retail investors over the past twenty years - yet for people who are familiar with the equities market that operates with a central exchange and constant trading activity, the municipal market may still seem opaque.  In fact, the municipal market operates differently-but those differences are not incomprehensible and they are not part of any deliberate plan to obscure the facts or impede the ability of investors to understand bonds or their pricing.  Continuing retail investor confidence in the municipal bond market that has financed four million miles of roads, half a million bridges, 16,000 airports and 900,000 miles of water pipes all across the country is critical.

First, the bond "market" is not the same as the stock "market".  There are several structural differences between the two.  There is no central place or exchange to sell or buy municipal bonds; the municipal market is a huge "over-the-counter" market consisting of a network of over 1,600 independent dealers across the country. The muni bond market is so vast that its size, which consists of approximately $3.7 trillion of outstanding bonds, is sometimes hard to imagine.  This year alone, state and local governments across the country have accessed over $215.4 billion in funding through the municipal bond markets..... Read more...



Learn How ›


Sign up for e-mail alerts:

First Name:

Last Name:


Enter ›

SIFMA Blog Sign-up by RSS feed


Katrina Cavalli


Liz Pierce  



Carol Danko

Search Blog

Post a Comment

We encourage you to submit comments, queries and suggestions on our blog entries. Comments must be relevant to the post, and contribute to a substantive and informed dialogue for our fellow blog readers. We will post them below the entry, subject to the following guidelines:

View Guidelines

  • Please be thoughtful: Comments must be relevant to the post.
  • Please be brief: Comments are limited to 1500 characters. 
  • Please be prompt: Comments submitted more than one week after the blog entry appears may not be posted. 
  • Please be on-topic and patient: Comments are moderated and will not appear until they have been reviewed to ensure that they are substantive and clearly related to the topic of the post. 

This is a community please treat others with respect.  Specifically, please refrain from comments that are:

  • self-promotional or commercial in nature;
  • investment advice, or mentions of individual stocks;
  • abusive, harassing, or threatening;
  • obscene or vulgar; or
  • as well as comments that constitute a personal attack.  

We reserve the right not to post a comment; no notice will be given regarding whether a submission will or will not be posted.

Please contact us directly if you have any questions or suggestions.
Kate Zickel
Michelle Vandamme
Jeana Zamanski

Market Data