Knowledge Bank on Ratings Agencies – 988

1st January 1999

MM Articles:

Reactions to S&P's downgrading of Japans currency

Investing in Egypt: What's in a downgrade?


The big rating agencies are Fitch, S&P and Moodys. In order…

This one from Fitch has so much marvellous stuff on it, it can make an expert out of the novice credit analyst. You can't get everything for free, but you can get some excellent summary documents on – in particular – sovereign issues

This one from Standard & Poors is tricky to negotiate, but with some prize information once you've got the hang of it. It has good information on credit trends (why the corporate default rate might drop this year, for example).

Also, S&P has a very useful podcast here on the outlook for credit

Plus a good overview of credit ratings and how they are calculated

The Moodys website gives free access to weekly update and sovereign and corporate credit ratings. Again, a wealth of information available

This is a comprehensive study from the FT about the strength and limitations of the credit ratings agencies. In particular, an interesting blow-by-blow accounts of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission's hearing on the credibility of credit ratings agencies

The inimitable Robert Preston on the power of the rating agencies

This blog asks the existential question: why do the rating agencies exist? Ultimately the author finds lessons from the Peanuts cartoons

The agencies fight their corner in this article from The Independent

The IMF gives its two pennyworth in an in-depth look at the role of the rating agencies in the crisis. This IMF Working Paper is in PDF format, and doesn't make for light reading, but is a worthwhile read

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