Moody's Begins Euro-Bank Downgrade Tour With Italy
NEW YORK ( TheStreet) - Over two dozen Italian banks were downgraded by Moody's Investors Services Monday as the rating agency kicked off a promised multi-week revision of its assessment of Western-European financials.
The downgrades ranged from one to four notches, with banks such as Cassa di Risparmio di Ferrara scraping the ratings basement with a D- and Intesa Sanpaolo SpA hitting the top of the range with a C+. UniCredit SpA -- one of the country's largest institutions -- had its rating cut to C-.
Overall 26 banks were cut, with ratings declining by one notch for 10 banks, two notches for eight banks, three notches for six banks and four notches for two banks, Moody's said.
The cut makes Italian banks among the lowest-rated banks within Western Europe,. Moody's view is that the country's recession and government austerity, rising problem loans and restricted access to market funding have hobbled Italy's financial industry."
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