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Help Wanted: Buy-Side Firms Seek Muni Analysts

Municipal bond analysts are in demand. With triple-A yields diving into record low territory, fund managers are being forced to look harder to find yield.

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Comments (4)
What is the average salariy for a someone with 3-5 years experience.
Posted by jgangi | Friday, August 10 2012 at 8:43AM ET
As a young professional specializing in municipal bond analysis, it is very encouraging to read articles like this. I work for a commercial bank, and throughout the past two years my key role has been developing our internal municipal bond rating system. Not only is internal due diligence becoming increasingly necessary due to volatility and "headline risk", but internal analysis is also becoming a requirement by agencies such as the FDIC. In the past, commercial banks could justify their municipal holdings based on rating agency scores. In today's regulatory environment, these institutions are required to develop internal credit-rating systems. As commercial banks struggle to create profits from traditional sources, we have and will continue to see their focus shifting to the investment portfolio. This will likely lead to a greater demand of general municipal bond analysts as well. I don't think I could have picked a more interesting time to start my career in this field. I would greatly appreciate the opportunity to discuss this further with industry experts. My email address is t.hickman22@gmail.com.
Posted by Thomas H. | Monday, August 06 2012 at 8:15PM ET
As bonds are issued for 20-30-40 years, there exists the need to forecast infrastructure renewal and replacement project costs and new growth projects for the same planning periods in order to get a AAA. Best practices from Government Finance Officers Association(GFOA) propose long-term financial planning and the Water Finance Research Foundation (WFRF) proposes infrastructure asset management planning with condition assessments in order to maintain assets in the most cost effective manner while meeting approved service levels. This should be done in a collabortive effort with elected officials, city management, finance, planning, and the public. Technology and GIS plays a large part in developing the best low cost practices in infrastructure maintenance and asset management planning.
Posted by Gregory B | Wednesday, August 01 2012 at 11:01PM ET
Investment firms need to step up their game in monitoring and watching municipalities as more cities are on the brink. This includes reviewing bond documents, operating budgets, capital plans, revenue forecasts, infrastructure asset management practices and CAFRs to determine the financial management and capabilities of an organization. Likewise, municipalities and water and wastewater districts need prepare accordingly.
The adjustments of revenue to service levels and the maintenance of current assets have not been made. Many California cities are on the brink, general funds and enterprise funds.
Many organizations have deferred hundreds of millions of dollars and cut back maintenance staff which will cause premature failure of aging assets in all activities -public works, streets, fleet, marinas, parks, facilities, water, sewer, storm drain. There is a surging tidal wave of failing infrastructure which will impact municipalities' future ability to fund growth projects.
Infrastructure Asset Management technology and practices need to be applied in order to best allocate competing and limited funding matching the best infrastructure investment strategy to available funding.
Posted by Gregory B | Wednesday, August 01 2012 at 10:47PM ET
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