The MSRB protects municipal entities and obligated persons by regulating the professional conduct and qualifications of municipal securities dealers and municipal advisors, and by operating market transparency systems that promote access to data and disclosure documents. The MSRB does not regulate the activities of municipal entities or have jurisdiction over them.
The MSRB protects municipal entities and obligated persons by establishing rules for municipal securities dealers and advisors designed to promote fair, efficient and transparent transactions; prevent fraudulent, manipulative and other unfair practices; and minimize dealer and advisor conflicts of interest.
Read about MSRB rules designed to protect municipal entities and obligated persons.
The MSRB also protects municipal entities and obligated persons by setting minimum qualification standards for securities firms and banks that provide services municipal securities services. The MSRB’s Professional Qualification Program requires market professionals to undergo initial qualifications exams as well as continuing education. Similar standards will be set by the MSRB for municipal advisors.
Promoting market transparency helps protect all market participants. The MSRB provides real-time municipal market data and documents by operating the Electronic Municipal Market Access (EMMA) website. EMMA makes available free of charge municipal bond offering and disclosure documents as well as real-time trade data for 1.2 million outstanding municipal bonds, interest rates for auction rate securities and variable rate demand obligations, and municipal market statistics.
The MSRB operates EMMA as a centralized platform for issuers to communicate important information about themselves to investors. In addition to the required submissions under SEC Rule 15c2-12, issuers can submit voluntary disclosures such as preliminary official statements and information about the timing and accounting standard used to prepare annual financials.
Issuers and obligated persons can easily track their bonds on EMMA and compare the trading activity of their bonds with similar bonds. Issuers and obligated persons can also use EMMA to track the performance of their variable rate demand obligations (VRDOs) as well as comparable VRDOs. EMMA provides public access to additional key VRDO information, including liquidity facility documents – such as letters of credit – and the identity of the securities’ tender agent.