Credit agencies affirm long-term ratings for UCAR

UCAR earns A2 and A+ ratings

Jul 25, 2019 - by David Hosansky

The credit rating agencies Moody's Investor Service and Standard & Poor's Global Ratings have affirmed A2 and A+ long-term bond ratings for the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR).

In its report, Moody's stated that its A2 rating reflects UCAR's "established and prominent position" in operating the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and supporting leading research in the fields of climate, weather, and other Earth and atmospheric processes. "Operating performance has been steady and relatively predictable, with manageable debt and good debt service coverage," the Moody's report stated.

S&P's report stated that its A+ rating reflects UCAR's role as a leading organization supporting an academic community that studies atmospheric and global environmental research, coupled with UCAR's history of positive operations.

"The stable outlook reflects our anticipation that during the two-year outlook period, UCAR will maintain balanced operations and financial resources will remain stable or improve," the report stated.

UCAR is a nonprofit consortium of 117 North American colleges and universities focused on research and training in the Earth system sciences. It manages NCAR on behalf of the National Science Foundation. UCAR's annual expenditures are about $250 million.

"We are pleased to see the continued recognition of UCAR's stability and its focus on sound fiscal principles," said Susan Avery, chair of the UCAR Board of Trustees. "These ratings are also a testament to the UCAR staff who strive every day to be the best possible stewards of the NSF investment in NCAR."

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