S&P raises rating on Louisiana GO debt

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A major bond rating company has raised its rating on Louisiana's general obligation debt - a move that could save taxpayers money.

Standard & Poor's Ratings Service boosted its long-term and underlying rating on the state's general obligation bonds to AA from AA-. S&P said the outlook on the bonds is stable.

S&P said it upped the rating because of the state's management practices, lower-than-average unemployment and Louisiana's constitutional amendment requiring a balanced budget.

Generally, a higher rating translates into lower interest costs, making it less expensive for the state to borrow money.

State Treasurer John Kennedy said the state is scheduled to issue about $177 million in general obligation bonds next month.

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