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Central Washington University

Moody's Renews A1 Bond Rating for Central Washington University

Moody's Investors Service has reaffirmed Central Washington University's A-1 bond rating, which is effectively the highest rating a comprehensive university such as CWU can achieve, according to Joel Klucking, CWU's chief financial officer and vice president for business and financial affairs. Moody's is one of the nation's premier bond credit-rating services.

"Moody's described CWU's financial outlook as stable, meaning our debt remains at a very manageable level, and financial reserves and liquidity are sound," Klucking said. "The importance of an A-1 rating is that it allows us to borrow money at a cheaper rate than if we had a lower, less favorable rating."

Klucking said the rating arrives just as the CWU Board of Trustees is preparing to authorize a bond sale to finance the construction of a new residence hall. The university plans to issue up to $48 million in new bonds to pay for construction of a 402-bed residence hall and dining facility. The project will be located on a nine-acre site at East Dean Nicholson Boulevard and North Wildcat Way.

The board has scheduled a meeting on Wednesday, February 28 to approve the bond sale.

Klucking said the Moody's analysts were generally pleased with the university's overall financial picture, noting recent enrollment growth, a strong statewide economy, and the university's recent investments in long term growth strategies.

CWU has carried the A-1 rating since 2013. Klucking said the stable financial history and outlook make CWU an attractive option for investors. The consistent rating also confirms the strategic management of CWU finances and operations.

Moody's is a credit-rating agency that performs international financial research and analysis on commercial and government entities. The rating is an assessment of the credit-worthiness of an institution-the likelihood that the institution will be able to service the bonds. Moody's issues ratings whenever an institution is preparing to issue bonds.

Media contact: Richard Moreno, Department of Public Affairs, 509-963-2714, Richard.Moreno@cwu.edu.

Monday, February 26, 2018

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