BOSTON - S&P Global Ratings’ 2017 outlook for business conditions and credit quality across the transportation sector is stable to positive, depending on the subsector, according to “U.S. Public Finance Transportation Sector 2017 Outlook: Stable-To-Positive As Enthusiasm For Infrastructure Investment Could Trump Funding Realities” published today.
Specifically, we have a stable outlook on airports, mass transit, and ports, but a positive outlook on the toll road and bridge sector.
“Exposure to disruptive trade or tariff policies, expanded capital programs, or spending by issuers without a commensurate increase in revenue sources, potential for inflation in construction labor costs, as well as industry dynamics in the maritime sector, we view as overall risks to our outlook,” said Managing Director Kurt Forsgren. “We also anticipate movement by policymakers toward a federal infrastructure investment program with varying impacts, though the funding sources and form of any stimulus under the Trump Administration and the new Congress remains unknown.”
The key drivers for the transportation sectors continue to be economic and demographic trends that influence movement of people and goods, fuel prices that serve as a cost input for transportation companies and influence individual travel behavior, competitive factors that affect the business profiles of infrastructure providers, and federal transportation policies that facilitate investment by state, regional, and local governments.