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Fitch upgrades Baxter's credit rating

Fitch upgraded Baxter International Inc.'s long-term credit rating by one notch to A-.

The upgrade reflects the healthcare equipment company's improving operating profile after the spinoff of its biosciences division into Baxalta in 2015.

The ratings agency said Baxter had outperformed its expectations operationally since the 2015 spinoff, reducing its debt much faster than anticipated.

Fitch said the new rating was consistent with Baxter's current financial flexibility, which gives it room to pursue moderately sized acquisitions while generating enough cash to meet its debt obligations.