It wasn’t so long ago that buying municipal bonds was a far greater mystery than that of buying shares of stock in a company. We knew how find stockbrokers (or they knew how to find us). We could view the stock charts in the daily paper. But even though we all lived in towns, muncipalities, cities and states that raised funds by selling bonds most of us never bought a municipal bond or “muni”. Now, access to information, markets and exchanges via the internet has changed that, making it possible for you and I to buy government bonds onine.
A variety of brokerage houses, some that specialize in online bond sales – such as FMSBonds – and others that offer a vast array of investing options, including buying bonds online – such as Fidelity – make it possible to search for and select a wide range of government “bond offerings” from the comfort of home.
FMS’s online bond offerings include, for example:
- Taxable Muncipal Bonds
- Non-AMT Bonds (that are not subject to the “alternative minimum tax”
- Zero Coupon Bonds
- Insured Bonds
Typically, brokerages selling bonds will list their online bond offerings by showing the following:
- Government agency that issued the bonds
- Moody’s rating
- S&P’s rating
- Quantity available
- A general description
- An indication if it’s a “coupon” bond
- YTM or “Yield to Maturity”
- WCY or “Worst Case Yield”
- and last, but not least, the bond’s Price
Once you have performed your due diligence in selecting a government bond worthy of your investment of dollars it then is a simple matter of setting up an account by providing the necessary personal information, and money, of course, and you can begin your venture into municipal bond investing.