The Electronic Municipal Market Access, or EMMA, is a website created by the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB). EMMA provides free access to information about municipal securities – including official statements, continuing disclosures, price information, and transaction data – as well as educational materials.
Whether you’re a first-time municipal bond investor or a seasoned pro, EMMA can be a valuable resource. In this blog post, we’ll give you an overview of what the EMMA website has to offer.
Official Statements on EMMA
An official statement is a formal document that contains important information about a municipality’s bonds. Official statements are typically issued when bonds are first sold, and they include information such as:
– The purpose of the bond issue
– The legal status of the bonds
– The terms of repayment
– A description of the property or project that will be financed with the bonds
– The municipality’s financial condition
– Audited financial statements
Official statements are prepared by the issuer of the bonds, and they are available on EMMA for muni bonds issued after July 1, 2009.
See related articles on the bond market here, or this article regarding what is the electronic municipal market access (emma)?.
Continuing Disclosures on EMMA
Federal and state law requires municipalities to provide ongoing disclosure about their finances and their bonded indebtedness. This includes disclosing material events that could affect an investor’s decision to buy or hold the bonds. Some examples of material events that must be disclosed are:
– Default on any debt obligations
– Failure to make required debt service payments on time
– Bankruptcy filings
Continuing disclosures for most muni bonds are available on EMMA beginning 60 days after the date of issuance. For some types of bonds – including Build America Bonds, qualified school construction bonds, and qualified zone academy bonds – initial disclosures are available on EMMA starting January 1, 2010. Financial Information In addition to detailed transaction data and prices paid for individual muni securities trades, EMMA also provides extensive financial information about issuers of municipal securities.
This includes extensive issuer contact information as well annual financial audits for many issuers. You can also find ratings from nationally recognized statistical rating organizations (NRSROs) on EMMA. These ratings indicate an NRSRO’s opinion of an issuer’s relative credit risk.
Whether you’re a first-time investor or a seasoned pro, EMMA can help you develop a better understanding of the municipal bond market.