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Fitch Ratings downgrades Lebanon, S&P affirms credit ratings

BEIRUT | Fitch Ratings has downgraded Lebanon’s long-term foreign currency issuer default rating to CCC from B-.

The international rating agency’s downgrade of Lebanon is another blow to the struggling economy of the small Arab country that is suffering from one of the world’s highest debt ratios, high unemployment and little growth.

Fitch’s rating change Friday came minutes before Standard & Poor’s Global Ratings affirmed its long- and short-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit ratings for Lebanon at B-/B, saying the country’s outlook remains negative.

In February, Moody’s downgraded Lebanon’s issuer ratings to Caa1 from B3 while changing the outlook to stable from negative.

Railroad sues Oklahoma on law to limit blocked crossings

OKLAHOMA CITY | A lawsuit by a Texas-based railroad seeks to overturn an Oklahoma law prohibiting trains from blocking street intersections for more than 10 minutes, with some exceptions that include letting oncoming trains pass.

The Oklahoman first reported the federal lawsuit filed Thursday in Oklahoma City by BNSF Railway Co. of Fort Worth. The lawsuit names the Oklahoma Corporation Commission and the cities of Edmond and Davis.

Officials with the commission and the cities declined comment Friday, citing the pending litigation. In July, Edmond police twice and Davis police once ticketed BNSF for blocking intersections.

The lawsuit seeks preliminary and permanent injunctions to prohibit enforcement of the Oklahoma law passed this year and says U.S. law governing rail carriers supersedes any state law.

Safari Club moving 2021 convention to Vegas instead

of Reno

RENO, Nev. | Safari Club International plans to hold its national convention in Las Vegas in 2021 instead of Reno.

The Reno Gazette-Journal reported Friday the sportsman’s club is ending its initial three-year agreement with Reno a year early. The 2020 convention will continue in Reno in February.

The club hasn’t officially announced the venue change but the newspaper says the move has been confirmed by the Reno Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority.

RSCVA Board Chairman Bob Lucy says it’s disappointing but they continue to have a good relationship with the club and hope it returns someday.

Safari Club returned to Reno this year following a five-year absence and declining attendance in Las Vegas.

The RSCVA says this year’s convention generated an estimated $20 million in economic impact for the Reno-Tahoe area, including more than 17,000 room nights for the region’s hotels.

— From AP reports