CHICAGO -St. Olaf College in Minnesota had its rating affirmed at Moody's Investors Service as the school heads into the market with a $54.4 million new money and refinancing issue.

Moody's affirmed the college's $91 million of debt's A1 rating and stable outlook on Thursday, June 11. The college's deal is being sold as soon as this week through the Minnesota Higher Education Facilities Authority.

The deal will refund outstanding debt, provide new money, and cover negative valuations on swaps the school will terminate as part of its refinancing.

The A1 reflects St. Olaf's well-established student market, consistently favorable operations and modest leverage. "The rating favorably incorporates St. Olaf's growing geographic diversity as a selective liberal arts college, history of strong operating surpluses and cash flow, growing financial resources and manageable leverage," Moody's wrote.

The rating also reflects an increasingly competitive environment, heavy reliance on student charges that provide 72% of operating revenues, and an elevated tuition discount rate relative to peers.

St. Olaf College is a private four-year co-educational liberal arts college located in Northfield, Minnesota with an enrollment of more than 3,000.

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