WASHINGTON - Triple-A rated Virginia will come to market with $265 million of general obligation bonds today and tomorrow in a negotiated deal, straying from the state's traditional competitive route in response to an unstable market and higher demand from retail investors, officials said.

"In this environment, it just seemed like maybe this was a good opportunity to involve more retail buyers," said Evelyn R. Whitley, director of debt management for Virginia's Treasury Department. "We get a lot of calls from investors who are interested in getting some of our bonds but can't because they always go institutional. This also puts some bonds in the hands of Virginia investors."

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