Fitch Ratings-New York-09 July 2015: Stable operational and financial performance will remain intact for U.S. transportation for the remainder of 2015, though the sector is still enduring some challenges, according to Fitch Ratings in its mid-year outlook report.
Growth for airports is solidifying, with passenger traffic up over 3% so far this year. However, growth at ‘many large hub airports will remain constrained due to capital programs and associated borrowings even though traffic volumes are improving,’ said Senior Director Seth Lehman.
Ports throughout the country should see continued modest improvement for the remainder of 2015, with the West Coast labor unrest now resolved. Though related congestion has largely dissipated, shippers are still weary and may keep some diverted cargo at East and Gulf Coast ports to diversify their delivery options in case there is future disruption.
Stability is also in the cards for toll roads throughout the U.S. Fitch expects traffic to grow moderately (roughly 2%) after the harsh winter that hit the Northeast and Midwest and now that gas prices have normalized. That said, the sector is still facing some political risk. ‘There are still headwinds at the state level with respect to P3 approval and progress, while there is increasing opposition to tolling in places such as Texas,’ said Lehman.