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California escapes the ratings cellar

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Times business writer Marc Lifsher reports in the Money & Co. blog that California no longer has the worst credit rating in the country.

That distinction now goes to Illinois.

California, of course, still has a long way to go.

It is now ranked 49th among the states in creditworthiness by the Wall Street bond rating agency Standard & Poor’s.

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On Thursday, the firm announced that it had hiked its evaluation of California’s long-term debt one notch from ‘A minus’ to ‘A.’

Lifsher reports that the California upgrade is the first by S&P since May 2006. But the state still has a long way to go to regain the agency’s top rating of “AAA.” California has not held that distinction since 1986.

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-- Evan Halper

PHOTO: Gov. Jerry Brown speaks to lawmakers after giving his State of the State address in Sacramento on Jan. 24. Credit: Randall Benton/Sacramento Bee/MCT.


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