No AAA trifecta — yet

Published 8:38 pm Monday, June 22, 2015

After a second bond rating agency bumped up its rating of the city’s debt to AAA, the third such agency has affirmed its rating one notch below the gold standard.

After Standard & Poor’s last year rated the city’s debt at the highest possible rating — meaning the city will pay less interest on the debt it uses to build capital projects — Fitch followed suit this year.

Moody’s didn’t fall in line, however. On Thursday, it announced its Aa1 rating with a stable outlook for the city’s debt.

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The rating “reflects the city’s sizeable and diverse tax base that has substantial development potential, a sound financial position that continues to improve and is supported by healthy reserves and strong liquidity, as well as an above average but manageable debt burden,” according to Moody’s.

The agency said the rating could go up with a continued increase in reserves, improved demographic profile and a decline in debt burden. But a substantial tax base contraction, decline in reserve levels or increased debt burden could make it go down, it stated.