The Securities and Exchange Commission's April 16 roundtable on municipal and other fixed-income securities will include regulators and representatives from many municipal market groups, the SEC announced Tuesday.

The participants will discuss issues in four separate panels, the first and third of which will deal with muni-specific issues.

The first panel will discuss the current market structure for municipal securities and include dealers, academics, and financial advisors. The panelists will address the levels of price transparency and liquidity in the market, as well as transaction costs for individual and institutional investors and the relationship between the primary offering process and secondary market trading.

Participants scheduled to attend are: Robert Auwaerter of The Vanguard Group, Inc.; John Bonow of PFM Group; Larry Bowden from Stephens Inc.; Edelman Financial Service's Ric Edelman; Joseph Hemphill 3rd of Regional Brokers Inc.; Craig Noble of Wells Fargo; and Benjamin Thompson of Samson Capital Advisors.

The panel will also look at the role of alternative trading systems or electronic marketplaces in the muni market and whether they provide open access to traders or restrict participation to certain types of market participants. Panelists will also discuss how important interdealer brokers are to the market. Two other members of that panel are Thomas S. Vales, of electronic trading platform firm TMC Bonds LLC and Carnegie Mellon University financial economics professor Burton Hollifield.

The other muni panel will focus on the steps that could be taken to improve the transparency, liquidity, efficiency and other aspects of the structure of the muni market, including the recommendations in the SEC's report on the market that was issued last summer.

They will include Auwaerter, Hollifield, Noble, and Thompson again. MSRB executive director Lynnette Kelly will also sit on the panel, as will Government Financial Officers Association debt committee chair Ben Watkins. Other panelists include Jason Lehman from Headlands Technologies LLC, a global quantitative trading company, and Marshall Nicholson of Knight BondPoint. R.W. Smith's Paige Pierce, and Piper Jaffray's Brad Winges, the current chairman of the Bond Dealers of America, will also participate.

Panelists are to consider how pre-trade transparency can be enhanced, what the impact would be if ATS' were required to disseminate pre-trade pricing information, or interest in trading on their systems.

The roundtable will be held at SEC headquarters in Washington and will be webcast live at the SEC website from 8:30 a.m. EDT until about 4:15 p.m. EDT.

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