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Bond Raters Advise on Fix to California Law That Doomed PG&E

  • Legislators say they will seek input from credit-rating firms
  • Utilities face junk ratings amid mounting risk from fires
PG&E headquarters in San Francisco.
PG&E headquarters in San Francisco.Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg
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It’s no secret that lobbyists help craft laws. But what about credit-rating companies?

As California lawmakers work on a plan to stabilize the state’s biggest electric companies, which are facing increasing pressure from wildfire liabilities, they say they’ll seek input from ratings analysts to help ensure the utilities can retain access to capital markets. In a statement Tuesday, S&P Global Ratings said "there was a relatively short window" for legislators to show "concrete steps" before it downgrades the companies again.