Jan 22 - In 2012, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services downgraded 702 issuers
and upgraded 380 issuers, said an article published today by Standard & Poor's
Global Fixed Income Research, titled "Global Downgrades Prevailed In 2012;
Downgrades Expected To Worsen In Europe In 2013."
The downgraded entities had a total of $7.3 (EUR5.45) trillion in rated debt,
and the upgraded entities accounted for $1.3 billion (EUR972 million). The
significant volume in downgrades reflected the large sovereign downgrades in
Europe--the Kingdom of Spain (in the first, second, and fourth quarters) and
the Republic of Austria, Republic of France (unsolicited ratings), Hellenic
Republic of Greece, and Republic of Portugal (in the first quarter)--and the
subsequent downgrades of European banks and large financial institutions.
"Looking ahead, we expect the continued recession in Europe to place
additional pressure on ratings in 2013 as measured by the region's
higher-than-average negative bias," said Diane Vazza, head of Standard &
Poor's Global Fixed Income Research. "Other regions, notably the U.S., have
significantly below-average negative biases, which suggest more stable credit
quality over the course of the year."
In fourth-quarter 2012, there were 206 downgrades and 79 upgrades. The
downgraded issuers had a total of $2.2 (EUR1.65) trillion in rated debt, and the
upgraded entities accounted for $171.5 (EUR128.4) billion in rated debt. By
issuer count, downgrades accounted for 72% of all rating actions in the
quarter, topping the previous quarter's three-year high of 71%. "Most of the
rating actions in the fourth quarter were on non-U.S. issuers--a phenomenon
that has only occurred three times in the data series' 18-year history" said
Temporary contact numbers: Diane Vazza (646) 752-5369; Mimi Barker (646)
The report is available to subscribers of RatingsDirect on the Global Credit
Portal at www.globalcreditportal.com. If you are not a RatingsDirect
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