LONDON Jan 13 The fiscal paths pursued by the
United States, Germany, France and Britain have not changed
materially over the last 5 months and remain consistent with
top-notch 'Aaa' credit ratings, Moody's Investors Service said
The ratings agency noted the United States had taken a
different path to its European peers, rolling out further
stimulus while the others had moved to cut their deficits.
Britain and the U.S. had seen the steepest increases in
government debt as a result of the financial crisis, it said.
"For the four largest Aaa countries -- France, Germany, the
UK and the U.S. -- these (fiscal) paths show little change from
those analysed by Moody's last August," the agency said in its
"Aaa Sovereign Monitor".
"Despite these differing strategies, Moody's continues to
believe that all of these countries still possess debt metrics
... that are compatible with their Aaa ratings."
Longer-term, Moody's said all four countries faced "dramatic
increases" in their commitments from pension and healthcare
subsidies which must be brought under control.
Moody's also cast an eye over Australia, New Zealand and
It expected Australia to continue to post one of the lowest
debt levels of any Aaa-rated sovereign.
"Fiscal metrics for Australia and Singapore are among the
strongest of Aaa-rated sovereigns," it said. "New Zealand's debt
position compares favourably with the group, but its near-term
trajectory shows a further rise in its debt ratios before a
reversal is achieved."
(Reporting by Mike Peacock; editing by Chris Pizzey)