A spectre that periodically haunts the municipal bond market looms once again: the threat to alter the market’s sacrosanct tax-exempt status.

Brokers and investors mostly agree that the latest menace to munis’ tax-exemption, coming from President Obama’s 2013 budget proposal, has no chance of becoming a reality this year. But they are nonetheless troubled that the latest incarnation has taken on what they see as a particularly dangerous dimension because it would apply retroactively.

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