MSRB to Publish Voluntary Issuer Disclosures on EMMA

Date: June 10, 2009

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


MUNICIPAL SECURITIES RULEMAKING BOARD TO PUBLISH
VOLUNTARY ISSUER DISCLOSURE DOCUMENTS ON EMMA

Disclosures Will be Available in a Central Location

Alexandria, VA - The Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB) announced today that it will collect and publish for free on the Internet voluntary continuing disclosure documents from municipal bond issuers.  These documents, which include quarterly financial statements, budgets, changes in accounting standards, disclosures on related derivatives transactions and other disclosures, will be available on the MSRB's Electronic Municipal Market Access (EMMA) website (www.emma.msrb.org) together with other disclosure and transparency information about municipal securities already available on EMMA. 

Investors have long sought improved access to disclosures that some municipal bond issuers elect to provide.  The addition of voluntary bond disclosures to EMMA, which has been approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission, will expand the availability of these important documents to retail investors.

"Free, electronic access to voluntary disclosures by issuers that choose to provide them is another way the MSRB is improving municipal bond disclosure," said MSRB General Counsel Ernesto Lanza.  "We hope that many issuers will choose to use EMMA to disseminate voluntary disclosures."

The MSRB regulates municipal securities dealers and operates information systems to promote investor protection.  It does not regulate municipal bond issuers.  Lanza noted that the MSRB's planned collection of voluntary disclosures does not establish an obligation upon any issuer or obligated person to submit any voluntary continuing disclosure document.  Under SEC rules, issuers agree to provide certain on-going disclosures, including annual financial and operating information, audited financial statements and notices of material events.  Any additional voluntary disclosures submitted by issuers or obligated persons would supplement such baseline information to provide investors with a better understanding of their investments. 

On July 1, 2009, the MSRB becomes the SEC-designated central repository for all continuing disclosures by municipal issuers. The MSRB will collect and post these documents on EMMA beginning on July 1 where they will be freely available to investors for the first time. Voluntary continuing disclosure documents will be submitted, processed and disseminated in the same manner.

EMMA is a centralized collection of electronic municipal disclosure documents, official statements and transparency data that provides free public access to the information. 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.   


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.