Pennsylvania Hit By Fifth Debt Rating Downgrade in Two Years

Standard and Poor's Ratings Services is following through on its warning that it would lower Pennsylvania's debt rating if it didn't see strides on deficits and pension debt.
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Standard and Poor's Ratings Services is following through on its warning that it would lower Pennsylvania's debt rating if it didn't see strides on deficits and pension debt. The credit ratings agency said Thursday that it downgraded Pennsylvania's approximately $11 billion in general obligation debt from AA to AA minus. That puts Pennsylvania in the bottom seven of states rated by Standard and Poor's. Pennsylvania was last at AA minus in 1998. The drop is the fifth in two years by a ratings agency. They primarily cite Pennsylvania's recurring budget deficits, rising pension debt, limited revenue growth and empty financial reserves. Standard and Poor's issued the warning in April, two months before Gov. Tom Corbett signed a $29 billion budget that is balanced with more than $2 billion in stopgaps.