South Dakota has the highest credit rating possible from all three major bond rating agencies after Fitch Ratings upgraded the state’s rating Wednesday.
Fitch cited the state’s “consistently conservative fiscal operations” in upgrading South Dakota’s issuer default rating to “AAA” and state-linked debt to “AA+.” Collecting top ratings has been a priority for Republican Gov. Dennis Daugaard, and Fitch’s move comes after similar upgrades from Moody’s and Standard and Poor’s since May 2015.
“These types of upgrades demonstrate our state’s exceptional credit worthiness to financial markets,” Daugaard said in a statement. “We’ve worked hard to place our state on a firm financial footing, and that stewardship is paying dividends.”
Fitch also attributed the upgrade to South Dakota’s tax structure, since revenues have exhibited less sensitivity to national economic cycles than other states. The agency credited the state’s healthy pension system and low debt.
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