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NORTH CAROLINA EASTERN MUNICIPAL POWER AGENCY BONDS RATED 'A' BY FITCH -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --

NORTH CAROLINA EASTERN MUNICIPAL POWER AGENCY BONDS RATED 'A' BY FITCH
 -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --
 NEW YORK, Sept. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- North Carolina Eastern Municipal Power Agency's $115 million power system revenue bonds, Series 1992 A and $1.33 billion power system revenue bonds, refunding Series 1992 B are rated 'A' by Fitch. The 'A' rating on $3.2 billion outstanding parity revenue bonds is affirmed. The credit trend is changed to declining from stable. The bonds are scheduled to sell on a negotiated basis the week of Sept. 21 by a Smith Barney, Harris Upham & Co. Inc. syndicate.
 The new credit trend reflects greater uncertainty caused by recent operating problems at the Brunswick nuclear plant as well as continued concerns regarding the agency's high electric rates and the need for further sizeable rate increases over the next several years.
 While these are important issues and could impact the rating, the agency demonstrates a balanced approach to power supply planning, which should benefit from the generally favorable performance of its other power plants and the construction of the new Peaking Project. Furthermore, economic figures at the participant level are improving, aided by diversification away from agricultural and textile businesses.
 Additional concerns are the large percentage of revenues accounted for by the top five participants and the declining sellback arrangements with Carolina Power & Light Co. To help members be more competitive and further reduce costs, management has undertaken a demand-side management program, expanded statewide marketing efforts, and established innovative approaches to rate setting.
 -0- 9/18/92
 /CONTACT: Alan Spen, 212-908-0594, or Susan M. Courtney, 212-908-0503, both of Fitch/ CO: North Carolina Eastern Municipal Power Agency ST: North Carolina IN: UTI SU: RTG


AH -- NY071 -- 1263 09/18/92 16:15 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 18, 1992
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