University of Missouri Outlook Cut by S&P After Student Protests

The University of Missouri had the outlook on its AA+ credit rating dropped to negative from stable by Standard & Poor’s, which cited student protests last year that ousted school President Tim Wolfe.

The negative outlook “incorporates recent senior management changes and campus events that could, in our opinion, affect demand and enrollment in the short term and pressure the rating,” S&P analysts Ashley Ramchandani and Jessica Wood wrote in a report released Friday.

Wolfe resigned in November amid protests that the administration wasn’t doing enough to combat racial tension on campus and promote diversity and inclusion. Members of the football team refused to practice or play until he left office. Chancellor Richard Bowen Loftin also stepped down.

The university’s available resources relative to its debt may no longer be enough to justify the AA+ rating on its revenue bonds, the second-highest rank, according to the report. The negative outlook signals that the company may downgrade the school, with a flagship campus in Columbia, Missouri.

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