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Rebounding LAX Sees Its Bonds Taken Off Moody's Watch List

January 31, 2002|James F. Peltz

Moody's Investors Service said Wednesday that it removed Los Angeles International Airport bonds from the credit agency's "watch list" for a possible downgrade, making LAX one of the first major international airports to earn that distinction since Sept. 11.

After the attacks, the bond-rating agency had placed LAX's $234million of general revenue bonds on its watch list, portending a possible downgrade in the bonds' credit rating. The bonds currently carry an investment-grade rating.

But in removing LAX's bonds from the list, Moody's noted the airport's "prompt management cost reductions," and that passenger traffic had increased steadily during the last four months of 2001. Also, "LAX's debt load is quite modest when compared with other large airports," Moody's said.

The agency also said it initially was concerned about the potentially negative effects of the stringent security measures affecting LAX's revenue in the aftermath of the attacks, including the closure of the airport's central parking area. But the area has since reopened, Moody's said.

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James F. Peltz

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