Another credit agency improves ISU outlook, citing stable listings amid competition

For the second time in three months, a credit rating agency raised Illinois State University’s financial outlook, a move that could lead to lower borrowing costs going forward.

Moody’s Investors Service on Monday revised the ISU’s outlook to positive from stable. Moody’s cited the UIS’ “consistently positive operating performance in a very challenging operating environment related to prior state funding inconsistencies followed by the coronavirus pandemic”.

Moody’s said ISU enrollment was “generally stable” in a highly competitive market, “reflecting strong demand for ISU’s residential experience and diverse program offerings.”

“Management has established a strong track record of budget alignment while improving the university’s financial flexibility through unrestricted cash growth. The positive outlook also reflects Illinois State’s improving credit quality, with prospects for continued on-time payments from the state and growth in near-term operating credit,” said Moody’s.

The move comes just months after S&P Global Ratings upgraded ISU’s outlook, also from stable to positive, to ISU’s A- rating. It happened in December.

Moody’s also confirmed (or maintained) the actual ratings from ISU. The new “positive” outlook makes it more likely that these ratings will change in a positive direction.

“The recent Moody’s report is another piece of good news for the state of Illinois’ already strong credit profile,” ISU Vice President for Finance and Planning Dan Stephens said in a statement. communicated. “This provides additional assurance to our current debt investors and also helps the University attract other lending institutions that can offer us low interest rates to help fund our major capital projects.”

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