December 09, 2008

Standard & Poor's Takes Note of Case Western Reserve University's Financial Progress

Improves Outlook to "Stable"

Case Western Reserve University's recent financial success this week drew positive notice from Standard & Poor's. The independent provider of credit ratings has announced that it will maintain the university's AA- long-term rating, and revise its outlook from "negative" to "stable." The improved outlook should translate to lower borrowing costs for the institution going forward.

"We are pleased with the outlook change from S&P as it reflects our solid performance over the last fiscal year," said John Sideras, interim senior vice president for finance at Case Western Reserve University.

In the 2008 fiscal year the university posted a surplus of $127,000, a sharp reversal from the previous year's $20 million deficit. The results also marked the institution's first balanced budget in four years. In addition, the university raised $103 million in philanthropy, the third-highest total in its history.

Analysts from S&P specifically credited the size of the university's endowment and growing undergraduate enrollment as two elements of progress. They also took note of the university's broad range of academic offerings and new management team. The analysts visited campus in October and met with key university officials and trustees, according to Robert C. Brown, university treasurer.

"This result reflects their confidence in our approach and the people now leading the university," Brown said. "It also shows what the entire university can achieve when all constituencies work together."

Brown and Sideras commended the work of faculty and staff in controlling spending at the same time as they improved performance. Still, as pleased as they are with S&P's report, they noted that the university needs to continue careful budget monitoring in this challenging economic time. The recent budget results will create some flexibility to support priorities in the academic strategic plan, which in turn will advance the entire institution.

"We are also confident in and committed to continuing our positive financial momentum," Sideras said.

For more information contact Laura M. Massie, 216.368.4442.

Posted by: Kimyette Finley, December 9, 2008 02:25 PM | News Topics: news

Case Western Reserve University is committed to the free exchange of ideas, reasoned debate and intellectual dialogue. Speakers and scholars with a diversity of opinions and perspectives are invited to the campus to provide the community with important points of view, some of which may be deemed controversial. The views and opinions of those invited to speak on the campus do not necessarily reflect the views of the university administration or any other segment of the university community.