Municipal bonds were stronger at mid-session, according to traders, who were looking ahead to next week’s still healthy new issue calendar.

Ipreo estimates the upcoming week’s volume at $8.79 billion, down from a revised total of $8.91 billion sold this week, according to updated data from Thomson Reuters.

Next week’s slate is composed of $7.17 billion of negotiated deals and $1.62 billion of competitive sales.

“Next week’s primary issuance schedule is another above average week, but the past week's sales indicated plenty of investor cash available,” Municipal Market Data Senior Analyst Randy Smolik said in a Friday market comment.He added, while next week’s issuance is higher than the average weekly issuance of $6.1 billion, “this past week had a similar total and it didn't discourage buyers from reaching for this past week's negotiated sales.”

Secondary market
The yield on the 10-year benchmark muni general obligation fell three to five basis points from 2.16% on Thursday, while the 30-year GO yield declined one to three basis points from 3.01%, according to a read of Municipal Market Data's triple-A scale.

U.S. Treasuries were stronger on Friday. The yield on the two-year Treasury dropped to 1.29% from 1.34% on Thursday, while the 10-year Treasury yield declined to 2.33% from 2.40%, and the yield on the 30-year Treasury bond decreased to 2.99% from 3.04%.

On Thursday, the 10-year muni to Treasury ratio was calculated at 90.1%, compared with 90.0% on Wednesday, while the 30-year muni to Treasury ratio stood at 99.1%, versus 99.0%, according to MMD.

MSRB: Previous session's activity
The Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board reported 43,282 trades on Thursday on volume of $14.51 billion.

Week's actively traded issues
Some of the most actively traded issues by type in the week ended May 12 were from California and Ohio, according to Markit.

In the GO bond sector, the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District, Calif., 5s of 2047 were traded 20 times. In the revenue bond sector, the Cuyahoga County, Ohio, 5.5s of 2057 were traded 61 times. And in the taxable bond sector, the University of California 3.063s of 2025 were traded 43 times.

Week's actively quoted issues
Puerto Rico and New Jersey names were among the most actively quoted bonds in the week ended May 12, according to Markit.

On the bid side, the Puerto Rico Aqueduct and Sewer Authority revenue 5.25s of 2042 were quoted by 213 unique dealers. On the ask side, New Jersey Turnpike Authority 4s of 2035 were quoted by 155 unique dealers. And among two-sided quotes, the Puerto Rico Commonwealth 5s of 2041 were quoted by 27 unique dealers.

Week’s primary market
Bank of America priced Cuyahoga County, Ohio’s $915.8 million of Series 2017 hospital revenue bonds for the MetroHealth System. The deal is rated Baa3 by Moody’s Investors Service and BBB-minus by S&P Global Ratings and Fitch Ratings.

Citigroup priced the Houston Independent School District, Texas’ $848.74 million of Series 2017 limited tax schoolhouse and refunding bonds. The deal, backed by the Permanent School Fund guarantee program, is rated triple-A by Moody’s and S&P.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch priced Hawaii’s $856.25 million of Series 2017 FK, FL, FM, FN, FO and FP refunding and taxable general obligation bonds. The deal is rated Aa1 by Moody’s, AA-plus by S&P and AA by Fitch.

Ramirez & Co. priced and repriced the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s $682.12 million of Series 2017B dedicated tax fund climate bond certified green bonds. The deal is rated AA by S&P and Fitch.

Citigroup priced the Louisiana Public Facilities Authority’s $421.56 million of Series 2017 refunding revenue bonds for the Ochsner Clinic Foundation. The deal is rated A3 by Moody’s and A-minus by Fitch.

Barclays Capital priced the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District’s $386.16 million of general obligation green bonds. The deal is rated triple-A by Moody’s and S&P.

Morgan Stanley priced the city of Los Angeles’ $333.87 million of Series 2017A wastewater system subordinated revenue green bonds and Series 2017B refunding green bonds. The deal is rated AA by S&P, Fitch and Kroll Bond Rating Agency.

RBC Capital Markets priced the Dormitory of the State of New York's $304 million of school district revenue bonds.

Siebert Cisneros Shank priced the Oakland Unified School District, Calif.’s $221.44 million of Series 2017A Measure B and Series 2017B Measure J and Series 2017C general obligation refunding bonds. The deal is rated Aa3 by Moody’s, AA-minus by S&P and AAA by Fitch.

Citigroup priced Wisconsin’s $219.15 million of Series 2017A environmental improvement fund revenue bonds. The deal is rated AAA by S&P and Fitch.

Jefferies priced the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency’s $189.51 million of Series 2017-123 single-family mortgage revenue bonds. The deal is rated Aa2 by Moody’s and AA-plus by S&P.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch priced the city and county of Denver’s $185.39 million of Series 2017A water revenue bonds and Series 2017B green bonds. The bonds are being issued through Denver’s Board of Water Commissioners. The deal is rated triple-A by Moody’s, S&P and Fitch.

BAML priced and repriced the Monroe County Industrial Development Corp., N.Y., $151.95 million of Series 2017 tax-exempt revenue bonds for Rochester General Hospital. The deal is rated A-minus by S&P.

JPMorgan Securities priced the Illinois Finance Authority’s $136.32 million of Series 2017 revenue refunding bonds for the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. The deal is rated AA-minus by S&P and AA by Fitch.

BAML priced the Hayward Area Recreation and Park District, Alameda County, Calif.’s $125 million of election of 2016 general obligation bonds. The deal is rated Aa1 by Moody’s and AA-plus by S&P.

In the competitive arena, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California sold $245.17 million of Series 2017A subordinate water revenue refunding bonds. JPMorgan won the bonds with a true interest cost of 2.15%. The deal is rated AA-plus by S&P and Fitch.

Denton, Texas, sold $120 million of debt in two separate sales. Citigroup won the $90.96 million of Series 2017 certificates of obligation with a true interest cost of 3.34% and the $29.12 million of Series 2017 GO refunding and improvement bonds with a TIC of 2.73%. Both deals rate rated AA-plus by S&P and Fitch.

Bond Buyer visible supply
The Bond Buyer's 30-day visible supply calendar increased $1.74 billion to $13.63 billion on Friday. The total is comprised of $3.95 billion of competitive sales and $9.68 billion of negotiated deals.

Lipper: Muni bond funds see inflows
Investors in municipal bond funds continued to put cash back into the funds in the latest week, according to Lipper data released late on Thursday.

The weekly reporters saw $605.731 million of inflows in the week ended May 10, after inflows of $127.783 million in the previous week.

The four-week moving average was still in the green at positive $292.065 million, after being positive at $547.560 million in the previous week. A moving average is an analytical tool used to smooth out price changes by filtering out fluctuations.

Long-term muni bond funds also had inflows, gaining $355.772 million in the latest week after rising $21.355 million in the previous week. Intermediate-term funds had inflows of $104.229 million after outflows of $20.400 million in the prior week.

National funds had inflows of $635.1164 million after inflows of $205.904 million in the previous week. High-yield muni funds reported inflows of $179.829 million in the latest reporting week, after inflows of $36.671 million the previous week.

Exchange traded funds saw inflows of $30.237 million, after outflows of $21.160 million in the previous week.

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Chip Barnett

Chip Barnett

Chip Barnett is a journalist with more than 40 years of experience. Barnett is currently Senior Market Reporter for The Bond Buyer.
Aaron Weitzman

Aaron Weitzman

Aaron Weitzman is a markets reporter for The Bond Buyer, focusing on the sell side of the municipal bond market.