Dec 20 - Canadian provinces made more progress in fiscal 2012 on the road to
fiscal recovery as key financial parameters continued to rebound from the Great
Recession. Although each province's performance varied, overall operating
surpluses increased and after-capital deficits declined because operating
revenues increased faster on average than expenditures did for the second
consecutive year. Most provinces appear to be on track to meet their stated
targets for returning to budgetary balance.
However, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said in a report released today
that it believes dimmer economic prospects in the second half of 2012, both in
North America and around the world, will likely make it harder to keep up the
"The issue of rising debt burdens is also looming larger," Standard & Poor's
credit analyst Stephen Ogilvie said in the report, entitled "Canadian
Provinces Continue With Small Steps Toward Recovery In Fiscal 2012." Total
tax-supported debt burdens rose again in fiscal 2012 for the fifth consecutive
year. Some provinces have tax-supported debt burdens at levels not seen since
the mid-1990s. "We believe that provinces will need to remain focused on cost
containment long after they achieve fiscal balance if their tax-supported debt
burdens are to fall again," Mr. Ogilvie added.
The report is available to subscribers of RatingsDirect on the Global Credit
Portal at www.globalcreditportal.com. If you are not a RatingsDirect
subscriber, you may purchase a copy of the report by calling (1) 212-438-7280
or sending an e-mail to email@example.com. Ratings
information can also be found on Standard & Poor's public Web site by using
the Ratings search box located in the left column at www.standardandpoors.com.