Sales of new municipal bonds jumped 27% in this year's first half, to an all-time high of $144.76 billion from $113.76 billion in the first six months of 1992, according to Securities Data Co.

The volume was the second largest for a calendar half on record, surpassed only by the second half of 1985, when issuers bombarded the market with $148.46 billion of bonds in anticipation of stringent tax reform.

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