How To Buy DC Water Bonds

There are two markets for municipal bonds - the primary market and the secondary market. "Primary market" refers to the initial issuance and sale of bonds by an issuer. "Secondary market" refers to the subsequent purchase and sale of bonds by bondholders after the bonds have already been issued.

Below is a general description of how to buy DC Water bonds in each market. The information provided below is not investment advice. Please contact your investment advisor for investment advice.

How to Buy DC Water Bonds - Primary Market

The District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC Water) sells its bonds in the primary market through brokerage firms to various willing purchasers, including individual investors and institutional investors, such as banks and mutual funds. A description of the step-by-step process to purchase bonds in the primary market is provided below. (Note: DC Water sometimes provides individual investors with the opportunity to place orders to purchase bonds before other investors (such as commercial banks and other institutional investors). This early order period is known as the "Retail Order Period". A benefit of the Retail Order Period is that it provides individual investors with a chance to place orders prior to institutional investors. The Retail Order Period generally occurs one or two days prior to the bond sale date. Orders from District of Columbia residents are given priority.)

Step-by-Step Process to Purchase a DC Water Bond in the Primary Market

  1. Have a brokerage account
  2. DC Water does not directly sell its bonds in the primary market. Instead, DC Water sells its bonds through brokerage firms that it selects to participate in the initial bond sale (collectively, such firms are the underwriting syndicate). To buy a DC Water bond, you must have an account either with one of the participating brokerage firms or with another firm that can place an order through a participating brokerage firm.

    *If you have a brokerage account, go to Step 2

    If you do not have a brokerage account, you will need to open one in order to purchase bonds. The new account process may take some time to complete. Investors are encouraged to begin the process well in advance of a bond sale date. Each brokerage firm has its own requirements for opening an account.

    DC Water does not endorse any particular brokerage firm and DC Water does not guarantee that any particular firm will open an account for an investor.

  3. Learn about the bonds
  4. Read the preliminary official statement and/or final official statement, as applicable. Preliminary and final official statements contain detailed information about a bond offering, including a complete description of the security for the bonds, the principal repayment (maturity) dates, the interest payment dates, the credit ratings and the use of the bond proceeds. A thorough review of the complete document is essential to making an informed investment decision.

  5. Place your order
  6. Contact your brokerage firm for more information about how to buy bonds during an initial offering. You may wish to discuss with your brokerage firm or investment advisor the amount you want to invest, when you would like your investment returned to you, and the interest that you would like to earn on your investment, as well as any questions you may have after examining the official statement, preliminary and/or final.

How to Buy DC Water Bonds - Secondary Market

Step-by-Step Process to Purchase a DC Water Bond in the Secondary Market

  1. Have a brokerage account
  2. Bondholders sell DC Water bonds in the secondary market through brokerage firms. To buy a DC Water bond, you must have an account with a brokerage firm.

    If you have a brokerage account, go to Step 2

    If you do not have a brokerage account, you will need to open one in order to purchase bonds. The new account process may take some time to complete. Each brokerage firm has its own requirements for opening an account.

    DC Water does not endorse any particular brokerage firm and DC Water does not guarantee that any particular firm will open an account for an investor.

  3. Learn about the bonds
  4. Read the final official statement for the series of bonds that you are considering. Click here for information on how to access final official statements for bonds that have already been issued. A final official statement contains detailed information about bonds at the time of initial offering. Because a final official statement speaks as of its date, the information will not be current as of the date of purchase in the secondary market.

    Review any continuing disclosure information for the bonds you are considering. Click here for information on how to access continuing disclosure information. Continuing disclosure information consists of certain updates that DCWater provides on an ongoing basis after bonds are sold in the primary market. Such information notifies investors of certain important events, such as principal and interest payment delinquencies, modifications to the rights of bondholders, and rating changes.

    You also may wish to review current bond prices. The Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) provides a "Municipal Market At-A-Glance" overview with real time price information www.investinginbonds.com. SIFMA is responsible for its own web site and information.

  5. Place your order
  6. Contact your brokerage firm for more information about how to buy bonds in the secondary market. You may wish to discuss with your brokerage firm or investment advisor the amount you want to invest, when you would like your investment returned to you, and the interest that you would like to earn on your investment, as well as any questions you may have after examining the final official statement, any continuing disclosure information and current bond prices.

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