Long-term ratings trend turns south

The bias has shifted towards ratings downgrades in Asia and the three defaults so far this year are likely to be followed by more, according to Standard & Poor's.

In traditional East Asian culture, 2009 will be the Year of the Earth Bull. Ironically, however, a bear might better describe the coming year, as late 2007 to early 2008 marked the end of positive sentiment for both equity and credit in Asia-Pacific due to global financial market dislocations.

The actions by Standard PoorÆs Ratings Services on corporate and government issuer ratings i.e. non-structured finance in Asia-Pacific during the 12 months to October 2008 anticipated the transition of the credit...

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