The negative outlook indicates a slightly greater than 50 percent chance of a downgrade over a two-year horizon.
Credit ratings agency Fitch • Explaining the negative outlook they gave the U.S.’ AAA credit rating. Why the lower outlook? Well, they say there’s “considerable uncertainty surrounding the economy’s potential output.” Well, there won’t be as long as we can figure out a way to turn riots over $2 waffle irons into a sustainable moneymaking endeavor for the U.S. economy at large. We’re sure we can make it happen. Fitch’s downgraded outlook follows S&P’s straight-up downgrade a few months back. source(via • follow)
The ‘not-so-super’ deficit commission is very unlikely to come up with a credible deficit-reduction plan. The committee is more divided than the overall Congress… The credit rating agencies have strongly suggested that further rating cuts are likely if Congress does not come up with a credible long-run plan. Hence, we expect at least one credit downgrade in late November or early December when the supercommittee crashes.
Ethan Harris, economist for Bank of America Merril Lynch • Speaking on the looming possibility the U.S. could suffer another downgrade to their credit rating, this one in late November or early December. The last downgrade to the U.S. rating was not without controversy — one U.S. official called it a “a facts-be-damned decision,” over an accounting error by Standard and Poor’s that incorrectly inflated their deficit projections by nearly $2 trillion. Whatever might cause a credit downgrade, though, that it’s a dire consequence to be avoided is not in dispute, and rumblings are growing louder that the U.S. may end up biting this bullet again soon. source(via • follow)
S&P’s President Deven Sharma: I’m stepping down, homies: We know what you’re thinking — his departure had something to do with this mess. Well, you’d be wrong; apparently, his departure’s been planned for months. source
what The U.S. Justice Department is investigating whether S&P kept the credit ratings on certain bonds backed by mortgage debt higher in an effort to protect the company’s business concerns.
why See: The financial crisis, which happened in part due to toxic mortgage securities that had inflated credit ratings. S&P’s ratings played a huge role in this whole mess, BTW. source
» And in case you were wondering: This investigation began before S&P lowered the U.S. credit rating, though there’s a good chance it will now be informed by it. Anyway, if you don’t understand the credit ratings issue, here’s a good way to put it: Companies pay the agencies for high ratings. Kinda like if Warner Bros. paid Roger Ebert to recommend the latest Harry Potter movie. Now imagine if Ebert recommended “Birdemic” based on his financial interests. This would be extremely unethical behavior for journalists. But did S&P do something like that?
So maybe the White House is right and S&P figured it needed to save face, do the downgrade, and come up with a loosey-goosey reason that both sides could seize on to fight it out while ignoring that S&P just made a major mistake and the country took it on the chin because of that mistake.
Mark this moment as the one where RedState’s editorial philosophy and ShortFormBlog’s collided for one brief moment, creating a supernova of AAA proportions.
No matter what the agencies say, we will always be a AAA country.
President Barack Obama • Talking about the S&P’s downgrade of the United States in a speech today. He explained that they didn’t downgrade us because they didn’t believe that we would default on our debt, but because our politics get too much in the way — and because the threat of default was used as a bargaining chip. He also talked about our real challenge — long term deficit reduction. He stuck to his guns on policies like tax cuts for the wealthy, and also said that we need to keep unemployment benefits around to keep our recovery going. However, just from this speech it’s clear that it isn’t going to be easy. It’s evident that despite the fact that Obama has good intentions, the politics simply aren’t going to change overnight. Obama also honored the troops that died in the helicopter crash over the weekend, which was well-deserved and moving. source(via • follow)
Hey, CNN, you’re above this. This credit rating thing is a serious issue. While the adults in the room are concerned about their future, you’re running articles about how funny it is that “AA+” sounds like something you might see on a battery, or a bra size. Leave the jokes to Twitter or Mashable, or someone besides you. EDIT: If they’re not above this, they should be.
Perhaps this wasn’t intentional, but this e-mail we got from the WSJ about their MarketWatch Market Data iPad app seemed super-crass to receive less than an hour after the S&P downgraded the U.S. credit rating. Just sayin’.
“Keep in mind that Japan lost its AAA rating in the late 1990s. It was further downgraded earlier this year. It was as recently as 2009 that S&P cut Ireland’s AAA rating. Italy and Spain were both AAA rated in the 1990s, but Spain was actually raised back to AAA before losing it again in 2009.”
The review of the U.S. government’s bond rating is prompted by the possibility that the debt limit will not be raised in time to prevent a missed payment of interest or principal on outstanding bonds and notes. As such, there is a small but rising risk of a short-lived default.