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Connecticut AG Blumenthal vs. bond rating agencies



"It's no secret that credit ratings agencies rate municipal and corporate debt differently," notes Jim Kim at Fierce Finance. Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal professes to be confident that these differences arise from antitrust violations, so he's launched litigation that evidently plays well to a constituency of his state's town and city governments, the "vast majority" of which, Blumenthal opines, are deserving of triple-A ratings. (Blumenthal shared the stage with the mayor of Waterbury, a city few would elevate as a model of fiscal probity.) It looks as if the rating agencies aren't planning to go without a fight:

McGraw-Hill Cos., which owns Standard & Poor's, said the lawsuits are "simply a case of a state attempting to use litigation to dictate what bond rating it receives."

More: WSJ and its law blog, Naked Capitalism (sympathetic to the municipal borrowers but skeptical that Blumenthal has a case).

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Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy
rmangual@manhattan-institute.org

Katherine Lazarski
Manhattan Institute
klazarski@manhattan-institute.org

 

Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.