MSRB Seeks Approval of “Sophisticated Municipal Market Professional” Definition

On March 26, the MSRB requested approval from the SEC to revise the definition of “sophisticated municipal market professional” (SMMP) so that it is consistent with the new FINRA suitability rule for institutional customers. The proposal defines “SMMP” as an “institutional customer of a dealer that: (i) the dealer has a reasonable basis to believe is capable of evaluating investment risks and market value independently, both in general and with regard to particular transactions in municipal securities and (ii) affirmatively indicates that it is exercising independent judgment in evaluating the recommendations of the dealer.  Request for Approval.  MSRB Release.

Rating Agency Developments

On March 22, S&P released its methodology for Canadian credit card ABS.  S&P Release. 

On March 20, Fitch updated its criteria for stressing interest rate risk in structured finance transactions.  Fitch Report. 

On March 19, S&P  released its U.S. public finance long-term municipal pool methodology.  S&P Methodology.

On March 19, Fitch updated its rating guidelines for CP programs issued with external support.  Fitch Report.

On March 19, Moody’s released its finance company global rating methodology.  Moody’s Report. 

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