NEW ORLEANS – Port of New Orleans ratings raised from an ‘A-‘ to an ‘A’ by S&P Global Ratings.
Port NOLA’s President and CEO Brandy D. Christian believes the success came from the collective and collaborative effort by the Board of Port Commissioners and entire organization to manage debt effectively and efficiently, while continuing to grow business opportunities.
“This favorable rating from S&P reflects an ongoing commitment to fiscal stewardship and building strength through diversity of our business lines,” said Christian. “We serve as one of the region’s most important economic engines. This performance rating improvement validates our certainty that we as a public agency are on the right course.”
An excerpt from the full S&P report:
The rating reflects our opinion of the port’s strong enterprise risk and financial risk profiles. The enterprise risk profile reflects the port’s multimodal capabilities with access to six Class 1 railroads (two northbound, two eastbound, and two westbound), allowing direct and economical access to a wide variety of markets, and its importance to the regional economy. Competition from ports on the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic tempers these strengths. The financial risk profile reflects debt service coverage (DSC) metrics that we expect will be pressured but within a range we consider strong because the port’s debt burden may rise to fund its capital improvement plan (CIP). Offsetting this is susceptibility to fluctuations in the shipping industry and other economic forces, which we expect to continue.