It is a term used when a rating agency negatively revise, i.e. lowers, the level of credit quality, i.e. the level of reliability in regularly repaying creditors, attributed to an issuer of shares and bonds. Such a downgrade is possible both for private companies and Government bodies, which will be forced to pay more for the money they want to borrow on the market after they have been downgraded. The debt crisis in the euro-zone has provoked a string of downgrades of countries in the area. It started with Greece at the beginning of 2010, then in 2011 also Portugal, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Cyprus, France and Austria saw their rating downgraded; only Germany, the Netherlands, Finland and Luxembourg maintain their triple A rating in the euro-zone.
Gruppo Banca IFIS
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