NovaStar Also Upgraded

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services has raised its ranking on NovaStar Mortgage, a wholly owned subsidiary of NovaStar Financial, to "strong" from "above average" as a residential mortgage subprime servicer.

At the same time, S&P affirmed NovaStar's "average" rating as a special servicer. Since the company currently has no special servicing relationships in place, it cannot achieve a rating higher than "average," S&P said.

S&P said the rankings reflect the company's seasoned management and staff, well-designed systems, comprehensive policies and procedures, and enhanced internal controls.

"NovaStar continues to make operational improvements to optimize efficiencies and enhance oversight over its mortgage servicing practices," the rating agency said.

S&P's outlook for NovaStar is "stable."

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