Standard & Poor's Ratings Services revised its outlook on the City of Laval, (A+/Stable/A-1+), to positive from stable. At the same time, Standard & Poor's affirmed its 'AA-' long-term issuer credit rating on the city.
The rating on Laval reflects Standard & Poor's assessment of the following credit strengths:
- Long history of superior budgetary performances. Laval's operating surplus was 23% of operating revenues in 2010, which is stable compared with the previous year and in line with the five-year average.
- Relatively affluent local economy with above-average growth. Laval's economy relies principally on agriculture, industry, commercial services, and research (biotechnology). Investments made by the city in the past decade significantly boosted employment and had a positive impact on local growth.
- Healthy levels of liquidity. Laval's free cash and liquid assets (Standard & Poor's-calculated) have more than doubled since 2007 and totaled C$228 million at the end of 2010, or about 141% of debt service. At the end of 2010, the city had cash and temporary investments of C$276 million (including C$24 million of sinking funds) and lines of credit totaling C$185 million. Cash and investment balances have been increasing slowly in recent years and represented close to 45% of operating expenditures.