August 1, 2019 / 12:32 AM / 25 days ago

S&P cuts outlook on Singtel to negative from stable

SINGAPORE, Aug 1 (Reuters) - Credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s cut its outlook on Singapore Telecommunications to negative from stable, citing increasing competitive pressure in key markets as well as elevated cash needs for capital expenditure and dividend payout.

“The outlook revision reflects the risk of Singtel’s operating metrics deteriorating, or the company undertaking debt-funded investment or spending more than we anticipate,” S&P said in a statement late on Wednesday.

It also revised its outlook on Singtel’s Australia-based subsidiary Optus to negative.

S&P kept its ‘A+’ long-term and ‘A-1’ short-term credit ratings on Singtel.

“Singtel and Optus’ credit ratings are strong and we remain financially disciplined and committed to maintaining our investment-grade credit ratings,” Singtel, Southeast Asia’s largest telco, said in a statement.

Earlier this year, Moody’s reduced Singtel’s ratings outlook to negative from stable. (Reporting by Aradhana Aravindan; Editing by Michael Perry)

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