While many competitors have reduced their commitment to fixed income markets - or abandoned the business entirely - Baird continues to make meaningful investments. That has enabled us to build a strong team of experienced professionals who serve clients coast to coast. Our professional staff has grown by nearly 60% over the past five years. As the industry continues to contract, we believe there is compelling value in Baird's commitment to local expertise, national reach and product innovation in fixed income - a commitment our clients can trust to be there, year after year.
Fixed Income Sales and Trading
During 2013, we continued to strengthen our overall Sales and Trading team with the addition of specialist traders and expanded research and analytics skills. Our capabilities were also significantly broadened with the creation of an institutional sales and trading team specializing in high-yield fixed income securities. The group deals in corporate debt securities across key industry sectors.
Our Sales and Trading team helped clients navigate challenging markets during the second half of the year, impacted by interest rate increases and ongoing concerns over the Federal Reserve's future bond purchases. For the year, our fixed income desks traded more than $255 billion in taxable and tax-exempt bonds.
Baird's ability to provide clients with broad and balanced distribution through a coordinated national network of offices provided the foundation for continued growth in municipal underwriting. We ranked among the top 5 municipal underwriters nationwide for issues of $100 million or less and for competitive issues of all sizes, based on par value, according to IPREO MuniAnalytics.
Baird Public Finance continued to build its national footprint, opening its fourth office in Texas, adding bankers in Pennsylvania and Ohio, and expanding its capabilities in Charter School, Healthcare and Structured Finance transactions. Our ability to serve clients nationally while maintaining senior-level local involvement is winning major assignments in new markets.
During the past five years, Baird has managed municipal transactions in all 50 states, and we continued to win market share in 2013 despite market challenges. While the total par value of U.S. municipal issues decreased 15% industrywide in 2013 from the previous year, the total value of municipal issues book run by Baird declined only 4%, according to IPREO MuniAnalytics data. Baird extended its record as the No. 1 underwriter of municipal bonds nationwide, based on the number of issues.