The introduction of private equity into transportation finance is the most significant change in the U.S. transportation markets. Long term equity allows increased debt coverage for any given level of revenue. This increased coverage improves the credit worthiness of project debt. This is especially important during the early years of operations for a new facility when traffic patterns have yet to be established. Sources of these equity funds include overseas companies in the specific business of owning and operating transportation assets, plus U.S. and international financial firms which have the ability raise and manage large amounts of equity capital.