NEW YORK — Standard & Poor’s here on Wednesday said it has raised its corporate credit rating on Kroger Co. by one notch, from BBB- to BBB. The change reflects Kroger’s commitment to reduce debt obligations as well as S&P’s belief that the retailer will fare better than its peers in the tough economy, the agency said in a release.
S&P lowered Cincinnati-based Kroger’s credit rating to BBB- in 2005 when its debt ratio was about 3.5 times earnings. The company today stands at 3.0 times earnings — or 3.3 times including multiemployer pension benefits, S&P said.
Safeway, which was also lowered to BBB- by S&P in 2005, remains at the same level.
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