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has thrown



onto the junk pile, dropping the copier king's senior unsecured debt rating to BB from BBB- and the company's U.S. commercial paper to B from F3.

Fitch said the rating outlook is stable. The ratings change stemmed from Fitch's view that the company's financial performance has declined and will continue to do as the economy slows. The ratings agency said Xerox has limited financial flexibility, along with risky plans to execute cost reduction programs and implement a new operating strategy.

The outlook went to stable from negative because Xerox has improved its near-term liquidity situation, the ratings agency said.

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In December,


cut the company's senior unsecured debt to junk status.

The ratings cut from Fitch came shortly after a disappointing

fourth quarter for Xerox, historically the company's strongest earnings period. The company, which is based in Stamford, Conn., posted a loss of 31 cents a share.

Xerox lost 7 cents, or 1%, to close at $6.95 on the

New York Stock Exchange