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Buy Muni Bonds


  • In late 2021, interest rates were rising, and municipal bond rates were rising along with them.As of July 10, 2022, 10-year AAA-rated muni bonds returned 2.60% compared to 2.70% a week earlier. A 20-year AAA-rated bond returned 2.90% compared to 3.00% the week before. A 30-year AAA-rated bond returned 3.05% compared to 3.15% the week before."}},"@type": "Question","name": "Can You Lose Money on Municipal Bonds?","acceptedAnswer": "@type": "Answer","text": "You can lose the money you invest in municipal bonds if the issuer defaults. That risk is vanishingly small, considering that defaults on municipal bonds reached 0.05% of $3.9 trillion of outstanding debt in 2020, a time during which local tax revenues were decimated by the COVID-19 pandemic.You also could lose money on muni bonds if you are forced to sell the bonds on the secondary market at the wrong time. The price you get will be determined by the total dollar amount of the remaining interest payments due, factoring in the prevailing rates available on new issues.","@type": "Question","name": "Which States and Cities Have the Best Municipal Bonds?","acceptedAnswer": "@type": "Answer","text": "The best muni bonds from any issuer are rated AAA. They are issued by state and local governments nationwide and their bonds have been deemed AAA by one of the major rating agencies. When a government runs into economic trouble, its bond ratings suffer (but it also will pay a better interest rate in order to attract buyers).After its 2013 bankruptcy, the city of Detroit missed payments on three of its general obligation bonds. That means it was responsible for three out of seven defaults on muni bonds rated by Moody's Investors in that year. The city has since managed to work its way back from a "negative" outlook to a "stable" outlook from S&P Global as of January 2021. Its outstanding debt was rated BB-.A bond rated AAA or close to it is one of the best municipal bonds. A bond issued by a local government that is teetering on the brink of bankruptcy is one of the worst. Investors who don't care to keep an eye on the finances of state and local governments they invest in can invest in a bond mutual fund or ETF. It will be managed by someone who gets paid to pay attention to these things.","@type": "Question","name": "Are Municipal Bonds Safe?","acceptedAnswer": "@type": "Answer","text": "A municipal bond, or any bond for that matter, is safe as long as its issuer does not financially collapse. Luckily, that's highly unlikely in the U.S. bond market.The bond investor's best protection is to take care:Check the bond rating. Defaults are rare, but they happen. A rating of AAA, AA, or A indicates an issuer that is on a sound financial footing.Compare the real return on the municipal bond to other options for your money. It's always nice to save money on taxes but not at the cost of a better return for a comparable risk elsewhere, such as in high-quality corporate bonds."]}]}] Investing Stocks

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buy muni bonds



As of July 10, 2022, 10-year AAA-rated muni bonds returned 2.60% compared to 2.70% a week earlier. A 20-year AAA-rated bond returned 2.90% compared to 3.00% the week before. A 30-year AAA-rated bond returned 3.05% compared to 3.15% the week before.


You can lose the money you invest in municipal bonds if the issuer defaults. That risk is vanishingly small, considering that defaults on municipal bonds reached 0.05% of $3.9 trillion of outstanding debt in 2020, a time during which local tax revenues were decimated by the COVID-19 pandemic.


You also could lose money on muni bonds if you are forced to sell the bonds on the secondary market at the wrong time. The price you get will be determined by the total dollar amount of the remaining interest payments due, factoring in the prevailing rates available on new issues.


The best muni bonds from any issuer are rated AAA. They are issued by state and local governments nationwide and their bonds have been deemed AAA by one of the major rating agencies. When a government runs into economic trouble, its bond ratings suffer (but it also will pay a better interest rate in order to attract buyers).


After its 2013 bankruptcy, the city of Detroit missed payments on three of its general obligation bonds. That means it was responsible for three out of seven defaults on muni bonds rated by Moody's Investors in that year. The city has since managed to work its way back from a "negative" outlook to a "stable" outlook from S&P Global as of January 2021. Its outstanding debt was rated BB-.


A bond rated AAA or close to it is one of the best municipal bonds. A bond issued by a local government that is teetering on the brink of bankruptcy is one of the worst. Investors who don't care to keep an eye on the finances of state and local governments they invest in can invest in a bond mutual fund or ETF. It will be managed by someone who gets paid to pay attention to these things.


General obligation bonds (GOs)General obligation bonds are issued by governmental entities but are not backed by revenues from a specific project, such as a toll road. Some general obligation bonds are backed by dedicated taxes on property, while others can be payable from general funds. The latter types of bonds are often referred to as "backed by the full faith and credit" of the governmental entity. While in many instances, "general obligation" means that the issuer has unlimited authority to tax residents to pay bondholders, there are cases in which the issuer or governmental entity may have limited or no taxing authority.


Revenue bondsPrincipal and interest payments for revenue bonds are secured by revenues generated by the issuer or by certain taxes such as sales, fuel, or hotel occupancy taxes. The only exception is when a municipality issues bonds as a conduit issuer. In those cases, while the municipality is the issuing entity, a third party is responsible for payments of both interest and principal. To learn more about conduit issuers, please see our section on Conduit bonds.


Insured bondsSome municipal bonds are insured by policies written by commercial insurance companies. The insurance policy is intended to provide for the insurer to pay principal and interest payments to bondholders in the event the issuer defaults. Investors should take into account the creditworthiness of both the insurer and the issuer when considering insured bonds. 041b061a72


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