July 7, 2010
Continued fiscal discipline, mid-year cuts, careful spending and diverse economy cited as key drivers for top ranking
Moody's Investors Service and Standard & Poor's reaffirm Missouri's AAA status
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - Moody's Investors Service and Standard & Poor's, both top global credit-rating agencies, have separately reaffirmed Missouri's AAA credit rating, making Missouri once again the only state in the Midwest to earn a triple-A rating from all three ratings agencies. Fitch Ratings reaffirmed Missouri's triple-A credit status early last week.
These ratings, which apply to general obligation bonds issued by the state, help keep borrowing rates low for school districts, local governments, and public bodies that borrow money to undertake major projects. Lower interest rates save taxpayers millions of dollars a year.
In reaffirming Missouri's AAA rating, Standard & Poor's and Moody's Investors Service noted Gov. Jay Nixon's sound financial management, including early and decisive action taken to offset projected revenue declines; Missouri's strong and diverse economic base; strong reserves and low debt burden.
"As the only state in the Midwest with a triple-A rating from all three ratings agencies, Missouri sets the standard for sound fiscal management," Gov. Nixon said. "In these challenging times, we will continue to maintain our financial discipline so that state government can provide the vital services the people of Missouri need, in the most efficient and effective way possible.
"As these reports underscore, the greatest strength of Missouri economy is its diversity - from automobile manufacturing and agriculture, to education and health care," the Governor said. "Our central location also gives us a strong competitive advantage in trade and manufacturing. These advantages, coupled with continued long-term investments in key priorities like education, job training and health care, will keep Missouri on solid financial footing today, and lay a granite foundation for growth in the years to come."