McNally announces Tennessee receives a AAA rating by nation’s leading credit rating agency

Contact:  Darlene Schlicher (615) 741-6336 or email:  [email protected]

 (NASHVILLE, TN), April 8, 2010 — Senate Finance Chairman Randy McNally (R-Oak Ridge) said today that Tennessee’s credit rating has been adjusted from a AA to a AAA rating by one of the nation’s leading credit rating agency.  Fitch Ratings, who made the upgrade, is a leading global rating agency which provides the world’s credit markets with independent credit opinions.  Fitch, together with Moody’s and Standard and Poor’s, are the three nationally recognized statistical rating organizations designated by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

“This is not an upgrade for Tennessee relative to its peers in state government,” said Senator McNally in speaking to members of the Senate yesterday regarding the matter.  “However, it is a more favorable rating as compared with non-governmental debt issuers, including those in the private sector.”

The bond credit rating assesses the credit worthiness of a government’s or corporation’s debt issues.  It is a financial indicator to potential investors of debt securities, such as bonds.   The rating ranges from a AAA, at the high end to a CC on the low end, in representing the quality of a bond.

“It is very important that Tennessee practices fiscal restraint as our credit rating is critical to state and local governments in the issuance of bonds,” added McNally.  “We will continue to work to gain the highest ratings available.”

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