credit rating

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A second major credit rating agency has downgraded Illinois' rating, citing financial "mismanagement" by state leaders amid a yearlong budget impasse.

S&P Global Ratings lowered the rating Thursday from BBB+ to BBB. The agency says the lack of a budget for the current fiscal year has "left Illinois with unmanaged spending" that could go on for another year.

Illinois had the worst credit rating of any state even before the current impasse between Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and majority Democrats.

Susan Stephens / WNIJ

Moody' Investors Service downgraded Northern Illinois University's ratings to Baa2 from Baa1 on its Auxiliary Facility System (about $199 million outstanding) and Certificates of Participation (about $12 million outstanding). The outlook is negative.

According to a news release, the downgrade reflects expected weakening of operating cash flow and liquidity due to lack of FY 2016 state appropriations resulting from the failure of the State of Illinois (Baa1 negative) to enact a budget eight months into the fiscal year.

NIU Official Reacts To Credit Downgrade

Mar 29, 2013
Susan Stephens / WNIJ

Officials at Northern Illinois University are responding to recent action taken by Moody’s. The investors’ service downgraded the credit rating for four Illinois universities, including NIU.


Moody's Investors Service is taking a pessimistic view of American colleges and universities. The agency says repeated increases in tuition are partly to blame.