Five Dutch Banks Downgraded by Moody’s

Continuing concerns about the eurozone debt crisis have resulted in five Dutch banks having their credit ratings downgraded by Moody’s Investors Service.

Included in the Moody’s move are double downgrades for major lenders ING and ABN Amro, which have both been cut to an A2 rating, as well as Rabobank Nederland and LeasePlan. The remaining institution, SNS Bank, experienced a reduction of one level to Baa2.

Furthermore, ING has been placed on negative outlook due to fears it could require another ratings reduction in the near future because of its exposure to the eurozone debt crisis and the possibility of Greece exiting the eurozone.

An exit is considered a strong possibility following the Greek general election this Sunday on 17 June, when the far-left Syriza party lead by Alexis Tsipras is expected to come to power on a platform of opposing the austerity measures demanded for continued eurozone membership.

“Today’s actions reflect Moody’s view that Dutch banks will face difficult operating conditions throughout 2012 and possibly beyond,” Moody’s said in a statement. Many other banks, particularly Spanish institutions, have already been downgraded over debt concerns across the eurozone, forcing corporate treasurers to consider bank risk anew, as part of their risk mitigation policies.


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