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Fitch Assigns Positive Outlook to Philadelphia International Airport Bonds, Affirms ‘A’ Rating

Fitch Ratings has assigned a positive outlook to Philadelphia International Airport’s (PHL) Revenue Bonds and affirmed its ‘A’ rating on USD 1.45 billion of debt.

In its ratings report issued on September 1, Fitch cited the airport’s new airline use agreement which “incorporates enhanced cash reserving mechanisms supportive of the airport’s upcoming large capital plan (CDP), and demonstrates airline carriers’ ongoing commitment to serving the airport and its service area.”

Fitch noted that PHL’s leverage remains low for an airport in the ‘A’ category and has a large and stable service area with solid O&D traffic. They also cite PHL’s improved liquidity position and strong expense management. Fitch points out that the strong airline agreement at PHL “in conjunction with the importance of American Airlines’ market share supports the current rating level.”

“Fitch moving PHL’s outlook from stable to positive speaks to our strong management throughout the pandemic and positive trajectory on the heels of a new airline agreement,” said Atif Saeed, CEO, Philadelphia International Airport. “We look forward to our continued financial recovery.”

This is the second time in the past three months that the airport has received a positive change to its rating. In June, Standard & Poor’s (S&P) assigned an “A+” rating with a stable outlook on PHL’s general airport revenue bonds — a two notch upgrade from the “A-“ rating PHL received in 2021.

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