Moody’s Upgrades City of Fresno’s Ratings Again

Bond Ratings for Lease Revenue, Convention Center, Pension Obligations Upgraded, Positive Outlooks Reaffirmed

FRESNO, CA – Mayor Ashley Swearengin today announced that for the second time in less than a year, Moody’s Investors Service has upgraded several bond ratings for the City of Fresno. The bond rating firm has upgraded the City’s Lease Revenue bond rating from Ba1 to Baa2, a two notch increase, the Convention Center bond rating from Ba2 to Baa3, also a two notch increase, and the City’s 2002 Pension Obligation Bonds and Judgment Obligation Bonds (POB/JOB) from Ba2 to Ba1.

The Lease Revenue and Convention Center bonds now have an “investment grade” rating from Moody’s, while the POB/JOB bonds are one notch below investment grade. They have also reaffirmed the City’s overall bond rating at A3 with a Stable outlook.

According to Moody’s, one of the world’s most widely respected bond rating firms, the upgrades reflect meaningful improvement in the city’s fundamental economic profile, with continued growth in taxable property values, sales tax collections and employment. The outlook on the other bond issues whose ratings were upgraded with this action remains positive.

“These ratings reflect our Administration’s hard work and commitment over the past seven years to build a reserve, pay off negative fund balances, and bring prudent, sustainable fiscal strategies to build a stronger and more fiscally secure Fresno,” said Mayor Swearengin. “The momentum we have created here through our revitalization efforts is gaining the attention of the business world, especially those investors who are now seeing Fresno in a new, positive light.”

Back in September of 2015, Moody’s upgraded the City of Fresno’s general obligation bond rating to A3 from Baa1, as well as upgrading Fresno’s lease-backed obligations, Convention Center bonds, pension obligation bonds, and judgment obligation bonds all by one notch.

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