Rating agencies respond cautiously to Japan's disasters

For the time being at least, the three main rating agencies are taking a sanguine view of Japan's sovereign and corporate debt, but warn that it is too early to make a judgment.

The massive earthquake and tsunami that hit northeastern Japan on March 11, and the continued destructive threat posed by the worsening failures at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, have provoked a cautious response from the three leading credit rating agencies.

Standard Poor’s says it is too early to judge the implications for Japan’s AA- sovereign credit rating. Much will depend on the “overall macroeconomic impact of the earthquake, the pace and duration of...

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