Standard and Poor’s Rating Services, one of the world’s leading providers of credit ratings, moved the University’s credit rating from AA+ to AAA, the highest possible rating, yesterday. The AAA rating indicates the University’s strong financial management, and will save University dollars for future capital investments such as the upcoming North Quad building project.The University is one of three public universities with a AAA rating, including the Universities of Virginia and Texas. The Standard and Poor’s rating is highly regarded by all financial institutions and is sure to save the University money, Business School Prof. Nejat Seyhun said. “These ratings will reduce our cost of debt in the market. This will reduce expenditures over the long run, freeing up money for academic priorities,” said Timothy P. Slottow, executive vice president and chief financial officer. “The upgrade also sends a signal to all University stakeholders about our successful ongoing focus on financial controls, budget discipline and ‘best practices’ in financial management,” he said.The University can borrow money at slightly lower costs because of this rating upgrade, said Business School Prof. Dennis Capozza. “The higher the bond rating, the lower the cost of borrowing.”Seyhun estimates that between 2/10 to 3/10 of a percent of future borrowed money will be saved. These figures correspond to annual interest savings of $100 to $200 thousand dollars.The credit rating indicates the University’s fiscal responsibility, University spokeswoman Julie Peterson said. “It’s a sign of how careful we are with our public resources.”According to the Standard and Poor’s report, the rating was mainly based on the University’s ability to maintain a strong financial and academic record despite a recent cut in state funding. Other factors that were taken into account included: the University’s national reputation for excellence in academics and research, strong financial liquidity, the $4 billion endowment and a strong record of fundraising.

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