Morgan Stanley Smith Barney today announced it will provide its Financial Advisors with expanded news and disclosure research on U.S. municipal bond issues via the MuniGUARD News service, which tracks relevant news coverage in local and regional publications across the nation. “Given the importance of this asset class to many of our clients and the numerous changes the municipal bond market has seen in the past few years, we want to equip our Financial Advisors with additional information that they can use in assessing investments with their clients,” said Michael Armstrong, Managing Director, Global Head of Capital Markets Division, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney. “ MuniGUARD News provides organized and accessible news research directly to Financial Advisors’ desktops.” The service gives one-click access to search results from more than 600 largely local and regional publications, linked to a specific bond issue and its obligors. Such local publications are often the first source of pertinent information about municipal issues. Each listed article title includes a relevancy index, showing why the article was flagged. Clicking on any title opens the article on the website where the article originated. MuniGUARD News is provided by DPC DATA Inc., a company specializing in municipal bond disclosure data and information services. Morgan Stanley Smith Barney supported the development of MuniGUARD News and, after serving as the beta test site for the service, is one of the first firms to bring it into production. Financial Advisors and traders also have CUSIP-level links to MuniPOINTS; easy-to-read abstracts of bond data drawn from final official statements, and MuniDOCS Online, which provides comprehensive listings of official disclosure filings by municipal issuers and obligors. Both were developed by DPC DATA to advance best practices in addressing regulatory disclosure and advisory obligations for dealers and Financial Advisors. “We encourage clients to discuss municipal bond holdings and prospective acquisitions with their Financial Advisor to discover how this news service can be used to help build and maintain their portfolios. While the search for relevant information for analyzing an investment is a never-ending journey, the addition of this news service certainly offers an important new avenue,” said Chris Brigati, Managing Director, Municipal Bond Trading, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney.
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