Summit last week became the first city in the state to carry a triple-A rating from all three rating agencies, when Standard & Poor's Corp. upgraded its assesmrnt to AAA from AA-plus.

Standard & Poor's said the upgrade was warranted because of Summit's "ability to thrive despite economic downturns in the regional economy."

The upgrade came in anticipation of a $10.3 million general obligation sale the city plans to sell tomorrow. Both Fitch Investors Service rate the city triple-A.

Summit is the only city in New Jersey rated AAA by Fitch and Standard & Poor's, and is one of only six with a Moody's gilt-edged rating.

In affirming its rating last week, Moody's said Summit's "prime credit standing rests on a developed, diversified tax base and position in a network of transportation corridors." Summit, which lies 20 miles west of New York City, also has a very low debt burden, Moody's said.

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