April 10 (Reuters) - (The following statement was released by the rating agency)
Fitch Ratings has assigned Barclays Bank PLC’s (‘A’/‘F1’/‘a’/Stable) USD1bn 7.75% fixed to fixed rate contingent capital notes due April 2023 callable April 2018 (ISIN US06739FHK03) a final rating of ‘BBB-'. The final rating is in line with the ‘BBB-(EXP)’ expected rating Fitch assigned to the notes on 27 March 2013 (see ”Fitch Assigns Barclays’ Contingent Capital Notes ‘BBB-(EXP)’ Expected Rating‘’ at www.fitchratings.com).
The notes are subordinated Tier 2 instruments without a coupon deferral feature and subject to a 7% capital adequacy trigger. On breach of the trigger, the notes will be automatically written down to zero and the notes cancelled, resulting in loss of principal and future interest for investors. The capital adequacy trigger is based on Barclays PLC’s consolidated core Tier 1 ratio until the implementation of CRD IV, and on its consolidated transitional common equity Tier 1 (CET1) ratio after the implementation date.
The notes are rated four notches below Barclays Bank’s ‘a’ Viability Rating (VR) in accordance with Fitch’s criteria for “Assessing and Rating Bank Subordinated and Hybrid Securities” dated 5 December 2012 at www.fitchratings.com. The notes are notched twice for loss severity to reflect the principal write-down feature, and twice for non-performance risk, to reflect the high incremental risk due to the 7% CET1 ratio trigger compared with the risk reflected in the bank’s VR.
The notes are rated in line with the USD3bn contingent capital notes issued in November 2012 (see “Fitch Assigns Barclays Bank’s USD3bn Contingent Capital Notes Final ‘BBB-’ Rating” dated 20 November 2012 at www.fitchratings.com).
As the notes are notched from Barclays Bank’s VR, their rating is primarily sensitive to any change in this rating.