Bond rating agencies reaffirm high rating for MIA
(MIAMI, November 19, 2014) – For the second time this year, two of America’s leading bond rating agencies have reaffirmed Miami International Airport’s strong financial health, assigning “A” ratings and stable outlooks to the Miami-Dade Aviation Department’s Series 2014 aviation revenue refunding bonds, as well as for the Department’s outstanding $5.74 billion aviation revenue bonds. Fitch Ratings and Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services (S&P) each assigned “A” ratings and stable rating outlooks last Friday in separate statements.
“Congratulations to the Aviation Department’s management team for keeping MIA, our community’s top economic engine, on a steady financial course,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez.
Fitch and S&P based their favorable ratings on several factors, including MIA’s position as the Gateway of the Americas, sustained passenger growth over the past several years, a well-balanced passenger base, and on-budget completion of major capital improvement projects. Other key factors highlighted by the rating agencies include MIA’s growing non-aviation revenues, which are driven largely by airport concessions and help to offset airline landing fees, and the airport management team’s successful containment of operating costs.
In their assessment, Fitch Ratings noted that MIA “stands out as one of the nation’s strongest international gateway airports with a dominant position for Latin American and Caribbean air services.” Standard & Poor’s added that “unlike most airports, MIA has experienced…generally good enplanement trends in the past few years. More specifically, from 2007-2013, growth in the number of domestic enplaned passengers outpaced both national growth and the growth at Fort Lauderdale International Airport.”
“Business at MIA is clearly moving in the right direction, and our healthy bond ratings are a direct indicator of that trend,” said Miami-Dade Aviation Director Emilio T. González. “That said, our management team remains focused on growing non-aeronautical revenues to offset costs to our airline partners, as well as on adding new routes and carriers to our network to best serve our customers.”