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U.S. Municipal-Bond Trading Volume Falls by 10.4% in First Half

U.S. municipal-bond trading volume fell 10.4 percent in the first half of 2012 compared with a year earlier as yields rose from four-decade lows in January.

The number of trades totaled 4.91 million, compared with 5.48 million in the first six months of 2011, the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board said in a report today. Dollar volume fell 1.4 percent to $1.42 trillion from $1.44 trillion in the same period of 2011.

New municipal bond sales are on pace to beat 2011, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Yields on 20-year general obligation bonds yielded 3.83 percent yesterday, up from as low as 3.6 percent in January, a level not seen since the 1960s, according to a Bond Buyer index of yields.

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