eBuzz: S&P: State rates great … still
JACKSON HOLE, WYO – Amid heated debates right now in Cheyenne regarding saving and spending, Wyoming policymakers and residents alike can rest assured in one thing: Wyoming’s credit is still A-OK with Standard & Poor’s rating service. Make that, AAA-OK.
Representatives of S&P announced today that Wyoming will continue to receive a AAA rating, the highest possible credit score. S&P also said the outlook for the state is “stable” and its financial management practices are “good.”
The S&P report noted several reasons for the favorable review:
– The state’s economic strength in recent years, with above-average population growth, lower-than-average unemployment, and above-average income levels;
– The governor’s strong statutory ability to make midbiennium cuts in the event of revenue shortfalls;
– Regular consensus revenue forecasting;
– Wyoming’s maintenance of large general fund balances;
– The existence of a permanent fund, whose interest earnings are available for general fund expenditures; and
– Low overall debt and other postemployment benefit (OPEB) liabilities, and a moderate pension liability.
The Governor’s Office issued the following statement in a press release: “Standard & Poor’s recognized Wyoming’s financial stability when it increased the state’s credit rating in May of 2011. The significance of receiving that increase and its affirmation now show Wyoming is in a very sound position and that we are a good place for companies to invest.”
Newly-appointed State Treasurer, Mark Gordon, said, “It is good for our state to be recognized for its fiscal discipline. It is a tribute to leadership, to the diverse and balancing parts of our economy that have contributed to its stability, and most especially to the Wyoming spirit of living within our means. This rating is important as it signals to investors how safe and solid investments in Wyoming, its municipalities, counties, and schools are.”
S&P says so, eh? The same S&P the SEC has a problem with? http://www.nbcnews.com/business/feds-sue-sp-over-mortgage-bond-ratings-1B8240197