US Municipal Credit Report, Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2013

Long-term municipal issuance volume, including taxable and tax-exempt issuance, totaled $73.4 billion in the fourth quarter of 2013 according to Thomson Reuters, an increase of 7.4 percent from the prior quarter ($68.3 billion) but a decline of 20.3 percent year-over-year (y-o-y). For the full year 2013, issuance was $315.2 billion, a 13.0 decline 2012 ($362.2 billion) and well below the 10-year average of $381.5 billion of issuance.

Tax-exempt issuance totaled $63.9 billion in 4Q’13, an increase of 5.4 percent but a decline of 20.0 percent q-o-q and y-o-y, respectively. For the full year, tax-exempt issuance totaled $266.7 billion. Taxable issuance totaled $6.5 billion in 4Q’13, an increase of 18.5 percent but a decline of 24.7 percent q-o-q and y o y, respectively; for the full year taxable issuance totaled $35.4 billion. AMT issuance was $3.0 billion, an increase of 37.0 percent from 3Q’13 but a decline of 17.6 percent y-o-y; for the full year, AMT issuance totaled $13.0 billion. According to the 2014 SIFMA Municipal Issuance Survey (“SIFMA Survey”), issuance is expected be $309.5 billion in 2014 (of which tax-exempt issuance is $265 billion, taxable issuance is $33.5 billion, and AMT issuance is $11 billion).

By use of proceeds, general purpose led issuance totals in 4Q’13 ($24.1 billion), followed by primary & secondary education ($13.6 billion), and water & sewer facilities ($7.4 billion). For the full year 2013, general purpose led issuance totals ($76.7 billion), followed by primary and secondary education ($51.7 billion) and higher education ($30.7 billion). As in prior years, panelists from the SIFMA Survey expect general purpose to lead issuance totals in 2014 as well.

Refunding volumes as a percentage of issuance remained largely the same at 41.1 percent of issuance compared to 42.7 percent in 3Q’13. For the full year, refunding volumes represented 51.3 percent, a drop from the 2012 (62.3 percent).

About the Report

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.


SIFMA Research

  • Managing Director, Director of Research: Kyle Brandon
  • Assistant Vice President, Research: Sharon Sung

Municipal Division

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