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Indianapolis Airport Authority credit rating holds steady even as revenue falls

December 19, 2009

Beginning to pay the mortgage this year on a new, $1.1 billion terminal—just as the airline industry lost lift—the Indianapolis Airport Authority still has managed to maintain its rating by two credit agencies.

But Standard & Poor’s Ratings revised its outlook from stable to negative, while Moody’s Investors Service tweaked it from positive to stable.

Their ratings of the authority remain at A1 and A.

Indianapolis has fared better than some airports in terms of declining revenue, with passengers down about 10 percent for much of the year and revenue off 16 percent at one point. Earlier this year, the airport estimated that revenue may come in at 15 percent below projections.

But the ratings agencies said the authority maintained a strong financial position overall and has diversified revenue. It remains uncertain when traffic will pick up and by how much, however.

The authority plans a $25 million debt refunding, with bonds scheduled to price in mid-January.

The terminal carries a mortgage of about $40 million a year. It’s touted as being more efficient, while designed to generate extra retail and food/beverage revenue.

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