Pensions and other post-retirement benefits will continue to be a growing concern for municipal governments and muni investors for years to come, says Morningstar municipal credit analyst Rachel Barkley.
The recent talk of a fiscal cliff compromise from Republicans and Democrats appear to have dissolved as leaders of both sides leveled pointed criticism at the other for failing to offer a truly balanced plan for taxes and spending cuts. So what's next?
Margin pressure, regulatory hurdles and intense competition will test the nation's smallest banks next year, industry experts predict. Those issues could lead to a resurgence of consolidation among community banks.
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