Standard & Poor’s is keeping Louisiana’s credit rating steady but also is keeping the state on a negative outlook.
The news comes a day after Fitch Ratings announced it had downgraded the state’s credit rating as it prepares to issue new bonds later this month.
Moody’s, the other of the three major ratings agencies, also recently downgraded Louisiana’s outlook, citing concerns over the state’s budget uncertainty. Lower ratings and outlooks mean the state has to pay higher interest rates when borrowing money.
Louisiana faces a $750 million shortfall in the budget that begins July 1, prompting lawmakers and Gov. John Bel Edwards to brace for a second special session later this year to raise new revenue to try to bridge the gap.
State Treasurer John Kennedy, who announced the Standard & Poor’s decision Wednesday, called on lawmakers to “address the structural imbalance in our state budget.”
“We cannot spend more than we take in year after year,” he said in a statement.