PUBLISHED: 6:04 PM on Wednesday, April 9, 2008
State rating now AA+
JUNEAU - Alaska's national rating agency, Standard & Poor's, increased the state's rating form AA to AA+, reported Gov. sarah Palin on April 2. This was the first time the state's rating has been upgraded since 1992.

"This rating increase indicates that we're on the right track," Palin said. "We will continue to work toward future upgrades by being responsible about how much we spend and how we prioritize spending, and by ensuring that we save as much as possible to prepare for the future."

Standard and Poor's is viewed as the authoritative source for state bond ratings. As part of its analysis of Alaska, it referenced the State's substantial and growing reserves, a budget surplus due to high oil prices and the implementation of the new ACES petroleum profits resource valuation, combined with prospects for a natural gas pipeline.

The credit upgrade may result in one quarter of one percent lower cost of capital to the State, which could millions of dollars over the life of proposed bonds, state officials said.