BRUSSELS, July 6 Credit ratings agencies must be
extremely careful to adhere to European Union rules, the
European commissioner in charge of financial regulation said on
Wednesday, issuing a further warning to the ratings companies.
Michel Barnier said the ratings agencies had made "profound
mistakes" in the past and had the tendency to follow market
thinking rather than independently diagnosing problems.
"I invite the agencies, which are under the control of
national supervisors, to be extremely careful to fully respect
EU rules," he said in a statement.
"They should learn the lessons from the past."
The European supervisor for markets, ESMA, now has the power
to revoke the licence of rating agencies that break EU rules.
Barnier said the EU could explore the possibility of
suspending the rating of countries that are currently receiving
bailout funds from the EU and IMF, namely Greece, Ireland and