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MASSACHUSETTS PORT AUTHORITY BONDS RATED 'AA' BY FITCH -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --

 NEW YORK, March 16 /PRNewswire/ -- The Massachusetts Port Authority's $54 million revenue refunding bonds, series 1993A and $47 million revenue refunding bonds, series 1993B, are rated 'AA' by Fitch. The 'AA' rating is affirmed on approximately $540 million outstanding parity revenue bonds. The credit trend is stable. The bonds are expected to be sold through negotiation during the week of March 15 by a syndicate led by Merrill Lynch.
 The 'AA' rating is based primarily on the strong competitive position of Boston-Logan International Airport as the principal airport serving New England. Additional credit strengths of Logan are its high percentage (89 percent) of origination and destination (O&D) passenger traffic and its even distribution of airline providing service.
 Strong management and planning capabilities have supported the authority's position throughout the recent economic downturn. Also recognized in the rating is the authority's solid historical financial management, which has yielded solid debt service coverage as well as high maintenance and improvement reserve fund levels. The authority's management also evidences strong planning capabilities on both the revenue and expenditure sides as well as in capital spending. Approval of a passenger facility charge will further enhance the capital program. Although the recession pressured operations, overall performance remains strong.
 Vulnerabilities are present in the Maritime Department due to continued deficits in the port's operations that are subsidized by the airport. Bridge operations also have been weak, reflecting construction related traffic declines. The authority's challenge now is to fund its capital needs, as Logan's airfield can no longer be expanded and air traffic is near capacity.
 -0- 3/16/93
 /CONTACT: Andrea R. Bozzo, 212-908-0515, of Fitch/


CO: Massachusetts Port Authority ST: Massachusetts IN: SU: RTG

LR -- NY020 -- 6448 03/16/93 10:07 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Mar 16, 1993
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