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London, 19 September 2014 — Moody’s Investors Service has today announced its decision to maintain the negative outlook on France’s government bond rating, which it has affirmed at Aa1.

The agency’s decision to affirm France’s Aa1 rating reflects Moody’s view that, despite negative credit pressures, the country retains significant credit strengths, including the size and wealth of the economy, as well as its affordable debt burden despite a continuous, gradual erosion of its economic and fiscal strength. The affirmation is also supported by renewed government commitment to accelerating the pace of structural reform, introducing a more consistent approach to economic policy, and proceeding with its budget saving plans.

That said, Moody’s decision to maintain a negative rating outlook reflects the rating agency’s view that the execution risks associated with implementing the government’s proposed structural reform initiatives are significant, given the strength of vested political interests that might oppose them and the poor track record in implementing such reforms.

In a related rating action, Moody’s has today announced its decision to maintain negative outlooks on the Aa1 ratings of Société de Financement de l’Economie Française (SFEF) and of Société de Prise de Participation de l’État (SPPE). The two entities’ Aa1 rating are affirmed, in line with the sovereign’s rating. Moody’s also affirmed the Prime-1 rating of SPPE, including its euro-denominated commercial paper programme. The senior debt instruments issued by the two entities are backed by unconditional and irrevocable guarantees from the French government.

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London, 22 February 2013

Moody’s Investors Service has today downgraded the domestic- and foreign-currency government bond ratings of the United Kingdom by one notch to Aa1 from Aaa. The outlook on the ratings is now stable.

The key interrelated drivers of today’s action are:

1. The continuing weakness in the UK’s medium-term growth outlook, with a period of sluggish growth which Moody’s now expects will extend into the second half of the decade;

2. The challenges that subdued medium-term growth prospects pose to the government’s fiscal consolidation programme, which will now extend well into the next parliament;

3. And, as a consequence of the UK’s high and rising debt burden, a deterioration in the shock-absorption capacity of the government’s balance sheet, which is unlikely to reverse before 2016.
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Frankfurt am Main, December 06, 2012

Moody’s Investors Service has today assigned a provisional (P)Aa1 long-term rating and a provisional (P)Prime-1 short-term rating to the debt issuance programme of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), in line with the ESM’s issuer ratings of Aa1 and Prime-1.

The outlook on the long-term programme rating is negative, in line with the outlook on the long-term issuer rating. Notes issued under the programme will constitute senior unsecured direct and unconditional obligations of the issuer.

The (P)Aa1/(P)Prime-1 ratings are based on the following factors:

  • The ESM’s anticipated low leverage: the ESM has a maximum lending capacity of EUR500 billion, which is backed by subscribed capital of EUR700 billion.
  • The creditworthiness of the ESM’s members which are also the euro area member states: the ESM has a weighted median shareholder rating of Aa1 (changed from Aaa further to the downgrade of France’s government bond rating to Aa1).
  • The sound liquidity and capital management policy, which benefits from an Early Warning System (EWS) that ensures that funds will be available on time.
  • The ESM’s preferred creditor status.

The ESM’s purpose is to provide an inter-governmental support mechanism which extends financial assistance to members that are either unable to access the capital markets, or able to do so only at very high interest rates.

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Frankfurt am Main, November 30, 2012

Moody’s Investors Service has today downgraded the long-term issuer rating of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) to Aa1 from Aaa, and is maintaining a negative outlook on the rating. At the same time, Moody’s has also downgraded the provisional long-term rating for the Issuer Rating and debt issuance programme of the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) to (P)Aa1 from P(Aaa), and is also maintaining a negative outlook. The short-term issuer rating of the ESM remains unchanged at Prime-1, while the provisional short-term rating of the EFSF remains at (P)Prime-1.

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Frankfurt am Main, November 19, 2012

Moody’s Investors Service has today downgraded France’s government bond rating by one notch to Aa1 from Aaa. The outlook remains negative.

Today’s rating action follows Moody’s decision on 23 July 2012 to change to negative the outlooks on the Aaa ratings of Germany, Luxembourg and the Netherlands. At the time, Moody’s also announced that it would assess France’s Aaa sovereign rating and its outlook, which had been changed to negative on 13 February 2012, to determine the impact of the elevated risk of a Greek exit from the euro area, the growing likelihood of collective support for other euro area sovereigns and stalled economic growth. Today’s rating action concludes this assessment.

Moody’s decision to downgrade France’s rating and maintain the negative outlook reflects the following key interrelated factors:

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