PG&E shares tumbled again on Friday as investors pondered an estimate that the embattled utility’s wildfire-related liabilities for the fiery devastation of 2017 and 2018 total “at least” $15 billion, according to a Wall Street firm that has downgraded PG&E’s credit rating to junk status.
“Extraordinary intervention” for PG&E may be needed from state lawmakers and regulators to help it avoid bankruptcy, according to the Moody’s assessment. This approach is being criticized by some as a bailout of a company that is already a convicted felon for crimes it committed before and after it caused a fatal gas explosion in 2010 that killed eight and destroyed a San Bruno neighborhood.
The most recent ratings setback for PG&E was delivered late Thursday by Moody’s Investor Services, which downgraded PG&E’s credit rating to junk status. Earlier this week, S&P Global Ratings downgraded PG&E to junk levels.