SEC and MSRB struggle to develop muni benchmark

While the Securities and Exchange Commission is working to develop a benchmark to better inform investors about the municipal market, in the wake of manipulation concerns surrounding the London Interbank Offered Rate, the regulator is concerned with "appropriate safeguards of reliability and absence of manipulation in order to protect investors, municipal issuers and the public," said John Cross III, the regulator's head of municipal securities. The SEC has struggled to reach consensus with the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board over what the benchmark would consist of, sources say.

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