RBC Capital Markets has hired Michael Lexton to lead RBC’s transportation finance business.

Lexton works in the U.S. municipal finance section of RBC’s New York City office. He is a managing director and the manager of the municipal transportation sector. Lexton is one of five full-time employees and six part-time employees in the sector.

Lexton’s job is to pursue bond underwriting business from transportation issuers. The bonds could be for toll roads, highways, airports, bridges, tunnels and ports as well as other projects.

“I am pleased to join RBC Capital Markets, which provides all the necessary tools to service major transportation clients: strong distribution, high-quality balance sheet solutions and a client-first approach that results in the very best of financing solutions for issuers,” Lexton said.

“The arrival of Michael marks another major step in RBC’s commitment to build a top-tier transportation business,” said Chris Hamel, head of U.S. municipal finance. “Michael will work closely with his colleagues across the platform to deliver thoughtful financing solutions and first-rate execution to an expanding range of transportation issuers across the country.”

Lexton is a nationally recognized expert in the financing of airports and other transportation projects, RBC spokeswoman Elisa Barsotti said. He has spent his entire 32-year career in state and local government investment banking.

This career began with 10 years at Smith Barney. He went on to lead transportation groups at Bear Stearns, Merrill Lynch and Lehman Brothers. Previous to RBC, he was a managing director at JPMorgan for four years. His entire career has been spent dealing with transportation finance, he said.

“The need for transportation infrastructure is so significant in this country to enhance economic development, economic growth and to aid the movement of people and goods from place to place,” Lexton said. “That has always fascinated me.”

RBC was the sixth-ranked lead transportation underwriter last year, the firm said.

Transportation underwriting is a growth area for RBC and Lexton is the first head of the transportation section, Hamel said.

Lexton started work at RBC on April 23. He reports to Jim Tricolli, head of RBC’s munil finance for the Eastern region. However, Lexton will oversee transportation transactions for the entire country.

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