WASHINGTON — House Financial Services Committee chairman Barney Frank unveiled two bills Friday that would require credit rating agencies to rate municipal and other securities solely on the likelihood of repayment and would ease restrictions on the ability of banks and corporations to purchase municipal bonds.

Stressing that defaults on general obligation debt issued by states and localities are practically non-existent, the Massachusetts' Democrat said the use of separate scales for municipal bonds has caused high-quality municipal bonds to be rated lower than corporate debt with a similar or higher risk of default.

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