SAN FRANCISCO Dec 14 Moody's Investors Service
downgraded approximately $90 million of Inglewood, California's
bonds on Friday, citing challenges the Los Angeles-area city
faces in balancing its budget.
The ratings agency also said it is concerned about
Inglewood's "relatively high" debt level and its "chronically
high" unemployment rate.
"General Fund operations are out of balance and a
significant amount of additional cuts are needed to restore
balance," Moody's said in a statement.
"Absent such cuts, the city will continue to struggle to
balance its budgets for the near term," Moody's said.
Moody's lowered its rating on Inglewood's lease revenue
bonds Series 2012 to 'Baa2' from 'Baa1,' and downgraded the
city's pension obligation bonds, 2005 Series A and Series B, to
'Baa2' from 'A3.'
The downgrades affect $31 million in lease-supported
obligations and approximately $59 million in pension obligation
bonds, Moody's said.
"The relative size and diversity of the city's tax base and
the city's key location in the heart of Los Angeles area economy
are the credit strengths underlying these ratings," Moody's
said, adding that Inglewood has made "measurable gains in income
levels relative to other cities in the state and the nation
according to the 2010 census results."