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MOODY'S ASSIGNS 'MIG 1' RATING TO MASSACHUSETTS BAY TRANSPORTATION AUTHORITY BOND ANTICIPATION NOTES

MOODY'S ASSIGNS 'MIG 1' RATING TO MASSACHUSETTS BAY TRANSPORTATION
 AUTHORITY BOND ANTICIPATION NOTES
 NEW YORK, May 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Moody's Investors Service has assigned a rating of "MIG 1" to the offering this week of $140 million Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority bond anticipation notes. The notes are to be dated May 14, 1992, and are due Dec. 15, 1992.
 A proven record of regular market access for the authority's general obligation bonds, issuance of which is expected to be the source of funds to pay these notes, provides highest quality security.
 Funding arrangements for these notes are distinct from those of the authority's borrowings to meet current expenses, in which regular note refinancings before final retirement are an established feature which introduces potential market risk.
 The Commonwealth of Massachusetts is required by statute to pay to the authority amounts needed to meet any deficiency in MBTA funds for debt service. This requirement, a general obligation of the Commonwealth, provides medium grade security for the authority's bonds.
 Commonwealth efforts in the last year to address underling budgetary imbalance offer the prospect of greater financial stability in the future. These include the enactment of a fiscal 1992 budget based on conservative revenue assumptions, initiatives seeking to achieve long- term savings through changes in operating and capital programs, and development of a consensus revenue-estimating process.
 Subsequent increases in this year's revenue estimate for the Commonwealth, which stand in contrast to a pattern of shortfalls in most other states, are evidence of the initial benefits produced by these efforts. Another positive development is a change in the focus of debate over fiscal issues now taking place, one which raises policy questions of which services to deliver and how to set priorities among them, rather than simply how to match revenues to expenditures. But even though fiscal 1992 is now expected to end with positive budgetary fund balances, these will be reduced from the prior-year level, as was expected at the time of budget enactment.
 Risks to financial improvement are still posed by economic stress, continuing spending pressures and the uncertainty of savings expected from program changes. Use of non-recurring revenues in this year's budget has been reduced from initial plans but still-significant reliance on such resources is proposed for next year.
 Key rating considerations in coming months will be the achievement of balanced results, now expected for this year, and the enactment of a sound budget for fiscal 1993.
 -0- 5/6/92
 /CONTACT: George W. Leung, 212-553-0342, or Steven Hochman, 212-553-0338, both of Moody's/ CO: Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority ST: Massachusetts IN: TRN SU: RTG


SH-OS -- NY060 -- 7152 05/06/92 13:51 EDT
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Date:May 6, 1992
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