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Credit rater warns on Mississippi, citing economy and taxes

Another credit rating agency is warning that the financial outlook for Mississippi government finances is weakening.

Standard & Poor’s Financial Services on Tuesday downgraded its outlook for state government credit rating to negative from stable.

S&P didn’t actually cut Mississippi’s debt ratings, but warned that it could later, saying it expects a budget squeeze to continue because of slow economic growth while tax cuts eat into state revenue.

The agency also cites the unfunded liability of the Public Employees Retirement System, which could require higher contributions from state and local governments to close the gap.

Fitch Ratings lowered Mississippi’s credit rating by a notch in August.

Moody’s Investors Service issued a warning in July similar to S&P’s action, cutting the outlook to negative but not lowering the credit rating.

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