S&P downgrades Greece ratings into junk status

NEW YORK, April 27 Tue Apr 27, 2010 11:31am EDT

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NEW YORK, April 27 (Reuters) - Standard & Poor's on Tuesday downgraded Greek ratings into junk territory on concerns about its ability to implement the reforms needed to address its high debt burden.

The agency cut the rating a full three notches to BB-plus, the first level of speculative, or junk, status.

The outlook is negative, meaning the agency could downgrade the rating again.

The action "results from Standard & Poor's updated assessment of the political, economic, and budgetary challenges that the Greek government faces in its efforts to put the public debt burden onto a sustained downward trajectory," S&P said in a statement. (Reporting by Ciara Linnane; Editing by Dan Grebler)