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Illinois' General Obligation Bond Rating Downgraded
With the August 29 S&P downgrade of Illinois’ general obligation debt rating, all three major rating agencies (S&P, Moody’s and Fitch) have given Illinois the lowest rating it has earned in more than a decade.
The chart below outlines historical comparisons. Interestingly, the last downgrade did not result from a change in economic or fiscal conditions but rather resulted from the lack of action on a particular fiscal problem: pension reform. This highlights the need for a credible plan to assure investors, businesses and taxpayers of the future fiscal stability of Illinois. The rating downgrade illustrates that Illinois’ problems result from political, rather than economic, weakness. -David Merriman
2012 data: http://www.ioc.state.il.us/index.cfm/fiscal-condition/bond-ratings, Standard and Poor's Brief History of US State Credit Ratings, July 2012; Moody's Investor Service; Fitch Ratings
2009 and earlier data: http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/past_years.html