Municipal Bonds

News & Analysis as of

Jury Finds Miami and Former Budget Director Guilty of Securities Fraud

In the first federal jury trial by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) against a municipality or its officers, jurors found that the City of Miami, Florida (Miami or the City) and its former budget director...more

The SEC Wins First Jury Trial in a Muni Case: SEC v. City of Miami and Michael Boudreaux

In what the SEC called “the first federal jury trial by the SEC against a municipality or one of its officers for violations of the federal securities laws,” a jury in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

The Commission prevailed in a jury trial this week against the City of Miami and its budget director in an action centered on three bond offerings. Cases brought by the agency this week also included: one against a firm and...more

SEC Wins Jury Verdicts Against City of Miami, Budget Director

The SEC prevailed at trial in an action against the City of Miami and its former budget director, Michael Boudreaux centered on three bond offerings. Specifically, the jury returned verdicts in favor of the Commission as to...more

Municipal Bond Actions May Be about to Get Ugly

Back in the 1970s, SEC Enforcement Director Stanley Sporkin had a problem. He had stumbled onto what looked like a vast number of illicit payments from public companies to people who shouldn’t have been receiving them,...more

SEC Sanctions 71 Municipal Issuers for Misstatements

On August 24, the SEC announced settled administrative actions against 71 state and local issuers arising from $3.7 trillion in municipal securities offerings.  The Commission alleged the issuers made false statements...more

SEC Announces Enforcement Actions Against 71 Municipal Issuers

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently announced enforcement actions against 71 municipal issuers of bonds in connection with the Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation (MCDC) Initiative. The...more

SEC Announces 71 Issuer MCDC Settlements

On August 24, 2016, the SEC announced that it had entered into settlement orders with 71 municipal issuers and other obligated persons for violations of federal securities laws in municipal bond offerings. The issuers and...more

SEC Charges 71 Issuers under its Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation Initiative

On August 24, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced enforcement actions against 71 municipal issuers and other obligated persons (collectively, the municipal issuers) under the SEC’s Municipalities...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

Numbers were the focus this week as the Commission filed 81 administrative proceedings (must be near fiscal year end) and two civil injunctive actions. Seventy-one of the actions involved municipal issuers who self-reported...more

Your daily dose of financial news - The Brief – 8.25.16

US regulators are “ramping up oversight” of Swift—the financial messaging system used throughout global finance that’s been a key conduit for hackers in recent attacks of Bangladeshi and Ecuadorian banks....more

SEC Settles With 71 Municipal Issuers

The Commission’s Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation Initiative has been a significant success. Under the Initiative the agency has filed settled enforcement actions against firm’s representing 96% of the market...more

Management Contracts & Private Business Use–IRS Releases Favorable Guidance

Coming as welcome news to those involved in the municipal bond market, Revenue Procedure 2016-44 provides helpful guidance for governmental issuers and 501(c)(3) borrowers entering into long-term contracts with private...more

"California Treasurer Announces New Pay-to-Play Policy for Municipal Bond Underwriters"

California State Treasurer John Chiang has adopted a new pay-to-play policy for firms participating in the state’s underwriter pool. By August 31, 2016, firms will need to certify that they will abide by the policy, or risk...more

SEC & MSRB’s Pay-to-Play Rule: “Governing Games - Mocking, Part 2”

This SRO gamesmanship is making a mockery of governing. The latest is the SEC’s position that it didn’t take any action on the new MSRB Rules extending pay-to-play prohibitions to municipal advisors, so it can’t be sued...more

California State Treasurer Sets His Sights on Curbing Pay-to-Play in the Municipal Bond Arena

While it’s easy for mainstream news outlets to get caught up in the mid-summer drama of Vice-Presidential selections, national political party conventions, and the geopolitical repercussions of Brexit, we here at Pay to Play...more

PROMESA Shields Puerto Rico Behind a New Automatic Stay

On June 30, 2016, President Obama signed the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA) into law. The most significant portions of PROMESA are found in titles I and II, which establish an...more

Quarterly Investment Update - 2nd Quarter 2016

Stock Market Commentary - The markets endured much drama in the two weeks leading up to quarter - end as the surprise exit of the U.K. from the European Union rattled investors. Brexit knocked over 5% off of the S&P...more

Securities Enforcement: 2016 Mid-Year Review

The Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC or the Commission) brought over 400 enforcement actions in the first half of 2016 and is on pace to surpass its record of 807 enforcements actions in a single fiscal year, which...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

Merrill Lynch was at the center of actions brought by the SEC and FINRA this week. One action charged the firm with violations of the customer protection rule tied to using customer cash and failing to protect their...more

SEC – Charter School CEO Settle Muni Bond Charges

The Commission resolved its second action arising out of undisclosed conflicts tied to a municipal bond offering used to fund construction for charter schools. SEC v. Rangel, Civil Action No. 1:16-cv-06391 (N.D. Ill. Filed...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

The Supreme Court concluded this week that a suit based on short selling filed in state court alleging state law causes of action was not preempted by the exclusive jurisdiction provision of Exchange Act Section 27 simply...more

Municipal Conduct Rule G-42 Effective June 23

The MSRB’s amended Rule G-42 becomes effective June 23, prescribing new conduct standards for municipal advisors and for the underwriters working with them. In advance of the effective date, the MSRB has published...more

Joint Notice: MSRB and FINRA Increasing Scrutiny of Private Bank Placements

Direct lending by banks has proliferated in the $3.7 trillion municipal bond market as states, local governments and non-profits find that they can borrow, in the form of direct loans, at interest rates comparable to those on...more

Your daily dose of financial news The Brief – 4.15.16

With regulators’ rejection of big-bank living wills still very fresh in mind, the Upshot suggests that keeping powerful banks “on their toes . . . may end up playing a surprisingly important role in keeping the financial...more

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