For the second time in two weeks, Florida State University has received a high grade for financial management, receiving an AA+ rating from Fitch Ratings Incorporated.
The Issuer Default Rating of AA+ was assigned to FSU based on the university’s strong financial profile, combined with its revenue defensibility and operating risk profile assessments. The rating comes after the university received an upgrade to AA+ rating from S&P Global Ratings earlier this month.
Florida State University is the only public higher education institution within the state of Florida with this rating from Fitch and becomes just the fourth public higher education institution in the country with an AA+ rating from Fitch.
“Fitch’s AA+ rating adds even more evidence of the continued improvement in the university’s financial strengths,” said Vice President for Finance and Administration Kyle Clark. “I am proud of the efforts of the entire university to reach such a significant milestone.”
With the AA+ rating, Fitch recognized the university to be a comprehensive flagship research institution with broad statewide, regional and even national/international draw for students.
“We are pleased that our university is one of only four AA+ public universities in the country as rated by Fitch,” said President John Thrasher. “It is noteworthy that Fitch recognized FSU’s strength as a leading comprehensive flagship research university in a fast-growing state with various revenue streams. I appreciate the hard work that Vice President Clark and his team have done to achieve this very significant accomplishment.”
Fitch also affirmed the AA ratings on the university’s limited revenue pledge bonds — parking, residence halls, the Florida State Research Foundation and mandatory student fee revenue bonds. These ratings on FSU’s related auxiliary bonds reflect the considerable credit strengths of the university and the fundamental importance of the auxiliary functions to Florida State University operations.
Fitch gave the university a Stable Rating Outlook, which indicated Fitch’s expectation that the university will sustain adjusted operating margins and cash flow margins, as defined in Fitch’s criteria, in line with historical trends.