The Determinants of the Municipal Bonds Market in Romania

Adriana Tiron-Tudor, Cristina Alexandrina Ștefănescu, Anamaria Dan


Municipal bonds are widely issued by local municipalities as a feasible financial alternative to fund infrastructure projects. On the other side, from the investors’ perspective, bonds issued by municipalities have historically been a popular investment option due to often favorable tax treatment for investors as well as the issuer’s credibility and generally high credit quality of the market.

The paper explores the factors that influence the size and interest rates of Romanian municipal bonds for a 20 years period starting from 2001, when the first issuance took place, to the present. The data collected were analyzed through multiple linear regressions using ordinary least square estimator. The results revealed that municipalities with large populations, higher levels of income and expenses, and longer maturity tended to issue more municipal bonds. On the other hand, the unemployment and inflation rates increased the interest rates. The regions, fund destinations, and political variables also influenced the levels of bonds issued as well as the interest rates.

These findings illustrated the importance of the context at local and national level, expressed by different social, economic and political variables that local governments should consider when issuing municipal bonds. The study contributes to the development of knowledge in the area of issuer’s characteristics and, moreover, the political, economic, and financial setting influences on the municipal bond market in an emergent country from Eastern Europe, Romania.


municipal bond; market determinants; public financing; Romania

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