Moody's Cuts Credit Ratings of 15 Banks: Hot Trends

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Popular searches on the Internet include Moody's after the ratings agency cut the credit ratings of 15 banks, including JPMorgan Chase ( JPM), Goldman Sachs ( GS) and Bank of America ( BAC).

A number of European banks also saw their credit ratings cut, including Barclays ( BCS), Deutsche Bank ( DB) and HSBC ( HBC). Moody's attributed the downgrades largely to its concerns about the banks' abilities to repay their debts. The agency had indicated in February that it was considering the ratings action.

Citigroup ( C) and Morgan Stanley ( MS) both indicated that they disagree with Moody's assessment.

Credit Suisse ( CS), which incurred a warning from Switzerland's central bank about weak capital levels last week, was the only bank that saw its rating cut by three-notches. All other banks' ratings were cut by one to two notches.

Many expected ratings cuts to take place and investors seemed to take the news in stride, as many US banks' stocks rose in after-hours trading.

A credit rating downgrade typically translates into increased debt servicing costs for the banks as investors seek higher interest in compensation for increased risks.


Flipboard is trending as the popular news reader app -- previously only available on iOS -- is now being offered for Google's ( GOOG) Android devices.

Flipboard for Android will come already installed on Samsung's Galaxy S3 phone, the company announced. Flipboard said it is also available on Amazon's Kindle Fire tablet and Barnes and Noble's Nook.

The company also made other announcements, including that it is adding Google+ and YouTube to Flipboard. The service is also now available in editions for Germany, Italy, Korea, Netherlands and Spain.


Severstal North America is another popular search. The Russian steelmaker has reapplied for a loan from the U.S. Department of Energy for $320 million to make new and improved steel.

Severstal originally requested a $730 million loan, but it was rejected by the agency in January. Now, Severstal hopes to acquire the reduced loan to produce lighter and stronger steel for automakers and suppliers.

Severstal celebrated the opening of two new lines capable of producing lightweight steel at its Dearborn, Mich. plant this week. The company has invested $1.4 billion in upgrading the facility so far. At the event, Chief Executive Alexey Mordashov said the company will focus on building its client base in the U.S., rather than buying other factories.

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