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Moody's Upgrades Salem Communication Rating

NEW YORK (AP) ¿ Moody's Investors Service said Tuesday that it upgraded Salem Communications Holding Corp.'s corporate family rating to "B2" from "B3" and its probability of default rating to "B2" from "Caa1."

The ratings service also gave the company's $300 million second lien senior secured notes a "B2" rating.

Salem is a Christian-themed radio broadcaster, Internet content provider and magazine publisher.

Moody's upgrade comes on the same day that Salem said it closed a private placement offering of $300 million of its 9.625 percent senior secured second lien notes due 2016 and settled early an already announced cash tender offer and consent solicitation for outstanding 7¾ senior subordinated notes due 2010.

Salem used the note sale proceeds, along with borrowings from a new $30 million senior secured credit facility and $28 million of cash on hand to pay back existing credit facilities.

Moody's said the upgrade is due to the company's much lower risk of default and better liquidity position as a result of the refinancing.

The ratings service's rating outlook for Salem is "stable."

Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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