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I'm new to bonds in general and municipal bonds in particular. I notice that munis are rated in a similar manner to corporate bonds. Given that they are issued by state and local governments, what's the real risk of default? Any recent examples of that? What's usually the worst case scenario? Premature call? Loss of principal?

It should be obvious I'm looking at those with high yields and less than AAA ratings. (A 9% tax-free yield is a market-beating return with a lot less hassle!)

Thanks in advance!
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