Fitch Upgrades Key City Of Miami Credit Ratings

Published on November 04, 2019

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(Miami, FL November 4, 2019) - Last week, leading credit rating agency Fitch Ratings upgraded the City of Miami’s Issuer Default Rating (IDR) to ‘AA’ from ‘AA-’ and its special obligation non-ad valorem revenue bonds to ‘AA-‘ from ‘A+’. The upgrades speak to sound financial management by the City of Miami, as well as the city’s broader economic growth in recent years.

“This news speaks to our ability to execute a disciplined and efficient approach to managing our finances,” said Miami Mayor Francis Suarez. “As we continue to grow, it is evident that not only are we protecting our financial standing and, as a corollary, our quality of life, but we are also enhancing these areas to create the city our residents deserve.” 

Fitch noted that the IDR upgrade is based in part on “the strength of the city’s various budgetary tools and available reserves,” which position the organization to manage the challenges that a moderate economic downturn could pose. According to Fitch Ratings’ analysis, recent settlements that the City Administration successfully negotiated with police and fire unions also eliminated risk to large cash outlays that could have pressured the City’s overall financial resilience. At the same time, Miami’s economic growth added to the rationale for upgrading the City’s credit ratings.

“This administration is committed to carefully managing the public finances that our taxpayers entrust us with,” said City Manager Emilio T. Gonzalez. “We welcome these credit upgrades from Fitch, as well as the positive third-party assessments and analysis that underpin them. Collectively, they affirm that the City remains on a positive fiscal path.”

The news of Fitch Ratings’ upgrades comes just one month after City Commissioners approved an annual budget that features the second-lowest millage rate in the last 55 years. The improved ratings will allow Miami to continue building its resilience while improving resident quality of life.