Fitch Affirms PHEAA Student Loan Trust 2014-1

NEW YORK--()--Fitch Ratings has affirmed the PHEAA Student Loan Trust 2014-1 senior note at 'AAAsf' and subordinate note at 'Asf'. The Rating Outlook remains Stable for both classes.

KEY RATING DRIVERS

High Collateral Quality: The trust collateral consists of 100% Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP) loans, including approximately 12% rehabilitated (rehab) FFELP loans. The credit quality of the trust collateral is high, in Fitch's opinion, based on the guarantees provided by the transaction's eligible guarantors and reinsurance provided by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) for at least 97% of principal and accrued interest. The current U.S. sovereign rating is 'AAA' with a Stable Outlook.

Sufficient Credit Enhancement (CE): While both the senior and subordinate notes will benefit from overcollateralization (OC) and future excess spread, the senior notes also benefit from subordination provided by the class B note. As of December 2014, total parity is 100.93% (0.92% CE) and senior parity is 103.96% (3.81% CE). Cash will be released from the trust given that the specified OC amount (the greater of 1.54% of the adjusted pool balance or $5.8 million) is maintained.

Adequate Liquidity Support: Liquidity support for note is provided by a reserve account. The reserve is sized equal to the greater of 0.25% of pool balance and $837,743.

Acceptable Servicing Capabilities: Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency as servicer, will be responsible for servicing the portfolio. Fitch has reviewed the servicing operations of Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency and believes it to be acceptable servicer of FFELP student loans.

RATING SENSITIVITIES

Since FFELP student loan ABS rely on the U.S. government to reimburse defaults, 'AAAsf' FFELP ABS ratings will likely move in tandem with the 'AAA' U.S. sovereign rating. Aside from the U.S. sovereign rating, defaults and basis risk account for the majority of the risk embedded in FFELP student loan transactions. Additional defaults and basis shock beyond Fitch's published stresses could result in future downgrades. Likewise, a buildup of credit enhancement driven by positive excess spread given favorable basis factor conditions could lead to future upgrades.

A comparison of the transaction's representations, warranties, and enforcement mechanisms (RW&Es) to those of typical RW&Es for FFELP asset-backed securities is available in the presale appendix. This presale appendix and Fitch's special report on 'Representations, Warranties, and Enforcement Mechanisms on Global Structured Finance Transactions,' may be accessed via the links provided below.

Fitch has taken the following rating actions:

PHEAA Student Loan Trust 2014-1:

--Class A affirmed at 'AAAsf'; Outlook Stable;

--Class B affirmed at 'Asf'; Outlook Stable.

Additional information is available at 'www.fitchratings.com'.

Applicable Criteria and Related Research:

--'Global Structured Finance Rating Criteria' (May 20, 2014);

--'Rating U.S. Federal Family Education Loan Program Student Loan ABS Criteria' (June 23, 2014);

--'PHEAA Student Loan Trust 2014-1 -- Appendix' (Feb. 24, 2014);

--'Representations, Warranties, and Enforcement Mechanisms in Global Structured Finance Transactions' (Oct. 31, 2014).

Applicable Criteria and Related Research:

Global Structured Finance Rating Criteria

http://www.fitchratings.com/creditdesk/reports/report_frame.cfm?rpt_id=754389

Rating U.S. Federal Family Education Loan Program Student Loan ABS Criteria

http://www.fitchratings.com/creditdesk/reports/report_frame.cfm?rpt_id=750530

PHEAA Student Loan Trust 2014-1 -- Appendix

http://www.fitchratings.com/creditdesk/reports/report_frame.cfm?rpt_id=736636

Representations, Warranties and Enforcement Mechanisms in Global Structured Finance Transactions

http://www.fitchratings.com/creditdesk/reports/report_frame.cfm?rpt_id=799248

Additional Disclosure

Solicitation Status

http://www.fitchratings.com/gws/en/disclosure/solicitation?pr_id=980266

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Contacts

Fitch Ratings
Primary Analyst
Paul Jiang
Analyst
+1-212-908-9120
Fitch Ratings, Inc.
33 Whitehall St.
New York, NY 10004
or
Committee Chairperson
Tracy Wan
Senior Director
+1-212-908-9171
or
Media Relations:
Sandro Scenga, +1-212-908-0278
sandro.scenga@fitchratings.com

Contacts

Fitch Ratings
Primary Analyst
Paul Jiang
Analyst
+1-212-908-9120
Fitch Ratings, Inc.
33 Whitehall St.
New York, NY 10004
or
Committee Chairperson
Tracy Wan
Senior Director
+1-212-908-9171
or
Media Relations:
Sandro Scenga, +1-212-908-0278
sandro.scenga@fitchratings.com