Moody’s Investors Service last week downgraded the New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board’s revenue debt to Baa1 from A3 with a negative outlook. The move affects $172 million of outstanding sewer revenue bonds.

The Baa1 rating reflects the monopolistic system’s service area, which is still recovering from Hurricane Katrina, and a financial position characterized by uneven coverage levels, failure to meet the rate covenant in 2009, a negative cash position and negative net working capital, analyst Robyn Rosenblatt said.

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