WASHINGTON Jan 2 Bank of America Merrill Lynch
remained the top underwriter in a shrinking U.S.
municipal bond market in 2013, while California sold the most
debt in the year, Thomson Reuters data released on Thursday
Altogether debt sales fell 15.1 percent to $311.8 billion
from the prior year, as rising interest rates brought the
refunding trend to a grinding halt. Preliminary Thomson Reuters
data released last week had estimated total issuance for the
year at $311.7 billion.
BofA underwrote $45 billion of bonds sold by states, cities
and authorities, representing 14 percent of the market. It was
also top underwriter in 2012. J.P. Morgan Securities
followed at $38.5 billion, or 12.4 percent of the market.
California issued the most municipal debt in 2013, $8.45
billion, followed by New York City at $5.4 billion. New York
State Dormitory Authority had been the top issuer in 2012, but
fell to eighth place last year.
Negotiated sales continued to dominate the market, totaling
$242.41 billion last year. But they shrank 17.3 percent from
2012. Competitive sales also fell, by 6.4 percent, to $69.36