State receives boost in bond credit rating
The upgrade allows for borrowing at lower interest rates
Standard & Poor's has updated the state's general obligation bond credit rating to "AA" from "AA-minus," Gov. Linda Lingle's office announced last week.
The upgrade allows the state to borrow money at lower interest rates.
"After a dip in financial condition in the early part of the decade, the state's fiscal condition is now on solid footing, with audited reserves at historically high levels," the bond rating service said. "Importantly, the state's economy continues to show indications of gradual diversification as measured by composition of total state earnings."
Standard & Poor's said the higher rating was supported by a combination of strong management, sound financial profile and long-term economic growth, Lingle's office said in a news release.
"With this upgrade, the state's bond ratings are the highest in the state's history and will result in lowering borrowing cost for the state," Lingle said.
The State's general obligation bonds are also rated "AA" by Fitch Ratings and "Aa2" by Moody's Investor Service.
In December, Standard & Poor's also upgraded bonds issued by the City and County of Honolulu to AA from AA-minus. Honolulu's debt had been rated AA-minus since 1999.