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Fitch affirms Corporate Office Properties ratings

Fitch Ratings affirmed Corporate Office Properties Trust's long-term issuer default and BBpreferred stock ratings.

At the same time, Fitch affirmed Corporate Office PropertiesLP's long-term issuer default, senior unsecured line of credit, seniorunsecured term loan and senior unsecured note ratings at BBB-.

The ratings hinge primarily on the company's strongfranchise- and defense-driven portfolio, with 77% of its NOI generated from itscore defense/IT tenant niche, and the fact that it is nearing the completion ofits portfolio realignment initiative. Other key drivers for the ratings includethe company's operating fundamentals remaining relatively intact, anticipatedmetrics improvement, robust liquidity and low unencumbered asset coverage ofunsecured debt, Fitch said in a note.

The outlook is stable, reflecting the rating agency'sexpectations for Corporate Office to keep its leverage around 6.0x over therating horizon and to have adequate capacity to resolve any operating softnessthrough asset dispositions.