US Municipal Credit Report, Fourth Quarter 2017

The municipal bond credit report is a quarterly report on the trends and statistics of U.S. municipal bond market, both taxable and tax-exempt. Issuance volumes, outstanding, credit spreads, highlights and commentary are included.


Long-term public municipal issuance volume totaled $137.9 billion in the fourth quarter of 2017, an increase of 62.6 percent from the prior quarter ($84.8 billion) and an increase of 38.1 percent year-over-year (y-o-y) ($99.9 billion). For the full year, municipal issuance totaled $410.0 billion, a decline of 1.1 percent from 2016 but still the third highest annual volume on record. Including private placements ($8.8 billion), long-term municipal issuance for 4Q’17 was $146.7 billion, while the full year total was $438.8 billion.

Tax-exempt issuance totaled $120.9 billion in 4Q’17, an increase of 60.3 percent q-o-q and 33.2 percent y-o-y; for the full year, tax-exempt issuance was $360.4 billion.  Taxable issuance totaled $11.5 billion in 4Q’17, an increase of 94.0 and 60.1 percent, respectively, q-o-q and y‑o‑y; for the full year, taxable issuance totaled $34.2 billion. AMT issuance was $5.4 billion in 4Q’17, an increase of 60.3 percent q-o-q and 33.2 percent y-o-y; for the full year, AMT volumes were $15.4 billion.

2017 Q4: Municipal Issuance

By use of proceeds, general purpose led issuance totals in 4Q’17 ($36.2 billion), followed by primary & secondary education ($18.2 billion) and higher education ($12.3 billion). For the full year, the rankings were still the same: general purpose ($178.4 billion), primary & secondary education ($126.2 billion), and higher education ($70.4 billion). Refunding volumes rose slightly to comprise 47.0 percent of issuance in 4Q’17 from 43.4 percent in the prior quarter but declined from 47.4 percent from the fourth quarter of 2016. For the full year, refunding volumes comprised 43.3 percent of all issuance, down from 48.2 percent in 2016.



SIFMA Research

  • Managing Director, Director of Research: Kyle Brandon
  • Assistant Vice President, Research: Sharon Sung
  • Intern, Research: Daniel Konstantionovsky
  • Intern, Research: Emily Losi

Municipal Division

  • Managing Director, Associate General Counsel, Co-Head: Leslie Norwood
  • Managing Director, Co-Head: Michael Decker