The US credit rating institute Moody`s Investor`s Service has today downgraded SAS’s credit worthiness from Ba1 to Ba3 for the company’s “senior implied rating,” which is a downgrading by two levels for the credit rating. Moody`s has also changed the outlook from “negative” to “stable,” as a result of the comprehensive improvement measures and support among the trade unions for the measures, strong commitment and follow-up in relation to the measures from management, increased accountability and signs of improved passenger volumes.
The downgrade is based on such factors as the uncertain situation in the airline industry in general as a result of low economic growth, which is affecting the demand for air travel. Moody`s appreciates the SAS Group’s new restructuring measures for the achievement of sustainable profitability and competitiveness. However, a total valuation led to Moody`s downgrade of SAS’ credit worthiness. Several other airlines have also been downgraded recently and the SAS Group’s credit rating is at the same level as the industry average.
The SAS Group is in a situation of favorable cash liquidity and good access to unutilized committed lines of credit. The changed credit rating does not affect the SAS Group’s existing loan portfolio.