Moody's Investors Service has been criticized for rating municipalities in a way that holds them to a higher standard than corporations. The credit rating agency is changing the way it rates munis, possibly reducing financing costs for local governments. "We are responding to the evolving needs of the market for greater comparability between the ratings of these obligations and those issued by other entities, such as corporations," said Gail Sussman, managing director in the U.S. public-finance group at Moody's.

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