MSRB Implements All-Electronic Standard for Official Statements

Date: June 1, 2009

Contact:          Jennifer A. Galloway, Chief Communications Officer
                       (703) 797-6600


Documents Are Available on the MSRB's EMMA Website

Alexandria, VA - The Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB) today implemented an all-electronic standard for free public access to primary market disclosure documents and transaction price information for the municipal securities market.   All official statements and advance refunding documents associated with new bond offerings will be filed electronically and posted on the MSRB's Electronic Municipal Market Access (EMMA) website at and are freely available to the public for immediate access.

 "We have made history by creating an electronic standard for municipal bond documents," said Ronald A. Stack, Chair of the MSRB. "The MSRB is ahead of the curve on price transparency and document disclosure by making both available through a single, integrated website tailored to the individual investor," he said. "The MSRB intends to continue to protect investors by ensuring that they have the critical information they need to assess municipal securities."

MSRB Rule G-32, which goes into effect today, requires municipal securities underwriters to submit electronic official statements and advance refunding documents to EMMA.  Electronic submission of these documents previously was voluntary.

The MSRB has been operating EMMA on a pilot basis since March 2008 and today the municipal bond information system becomes a permanent repository for electronic disclosure documents, official statements and trade data.  Also today, investors will for the first time have free access to certain continuing disclosure documents submitted by municipal bond issuers on a voluntary basis, and, beginning July 1, 2009, on a mandatory basis.  Over time, EMMA will be populated by a growing library of continuing disclosure documents that will complement the vast warehouse of existing official statements and other data on EMMA. In addition to disclosure documents, EMMA houses real-time and historical trade data for municipal bonds, interest rates and auction results for auction rate securities, interest rates for variable rate demand obligations, daily market statistics and useful educational material about municipal bonds.

Through EMMA, the MSRB seeks to improve transparency in the municipal securities market and offer resources to investors.  Today's implementation of the all electronic standard for primary market documents, along with a companion pilot system for the submission of continuing disclosure documents, significantly increases the volume of document submissions to EMMA.  The MSRB recognizes that these changes are new to the issuer and dealer communities and is working to make the transition as smooth as possible.  The MSRB is providing ongoing training and is committed to resolving issues related to EMMA as they arise.

The MSRB protects investors, state and local governments and other municipal entities, and the public interest by promoting a fair and efficient municipal securities market. The MSRB fulfills this mission by regulating the municipal securities firms, banks and municipal advisors that engage in municipal securities and advisory activities. To further protect market participants, the MSRB provides market transparency through its Electronic Municipal Market Access (EMMA®) website, the official repository for information on all municipal bonds. The MSRB also serves as an objective resource on the municipal market, conducts extensive education and outreach to market stakeholders, and provides market leadership on key issues. The MSRB is a self-regulatory organization governed by a 21-member board of directors that has a majority of public members, in addition to representatives of regulated entities. The MSRB is overseen by the Securities and Exchange Commission and Congress.