News

My Week If there was any justice in the financial world, the people who run the big debt rating agencies would be hanging from lamp-posts along with the investment bankers for the way in which their activities contributed to the 2008 financial crash. But they emerged pretty well unscathed, barring a few uncomfortable sessions before congressional committees. Politicians threatened all sorts of legislative nasties at the time, but it turned out to be all sound and fury signifying not very much.

Stephen Foley: Will Obama lose the US’s AAA credit rating?

In one place for your convenience, the current positions of the three main credit rating agencies on long-term US government debt.

US debt deal may be too little, too late

The fight to save the US's AAA rating is just beginning, with huge implications for the global economy

Stephen Foley: Debt plans seem too vague to save rating

US Outlook: Barack Obama's rhetorical gifts used to be channelled to soaring optimism. Two years in Washington and he can manage only pithy cynicism. The US may lose its triple-A credit rating, he says, "because we lack a triple-A political system".

The US Debt Ceiling: Is America in danger of default?

What is a debt ceiling?

Estate of Rosa Parks plundered, claims lawsuit

The estate of civil rights pioneer Rosa Parks is facing bankruptcy, with historically important items of memorabilia at risk, papers filed in a Michigan court allege.

Stephen Foley: Everything changes in global financial markets if there's a credit-rating cut

US Outlook: Less than three years after the collapse of Lehman Brothers, a second financial crisis is now more likely than not. Against the backdrop of calm equity markets and a positively sanguine bond market, I know this makes me sound like Chicken Little. But let me explain.

Leading article: Shooting the messenger

Manuel Barroso has become the latest European politician to take a swipe at the credit rating agencies. The president of the European Commission this week suggested that the timing of Moody's latest downgrade of Portuguese debt was "questionable" and implied some sort of anti-European conspiracy from the three large US agencies.

David Prosser: The wrong targets for Europe's ire

Outlook "Don't shoot the messenger." That is how one might summarise the response of the credit ratings agencies to the torrents of abuse hurled their way yesterday bygovernment officials in Greece and Portugal – on the wrong end of pronouncements from the agencies in recent days – as well as leading figures in Germany and the European Commission.

David Prosser: The credit ratings agencies are getting it right at long last

Outlook: The eurozone view that a default in Greece can be brazened out may prove to be yet another example of the wishful thinking seen during this debt crisis

David Prosser: Making the banks even less safe?

Outlook Moody's, the credit ratings agency, has an interesting take on the banking reforms unveiled by the Chancellor this week. While the aim of George Osborne's ring-fencing proposals is to make the banking sector safer, Moody's says it will actually be more likely to downgrade the ratings it gives leading banks if the reformsproceed as expected.

Moody's wobbles on UK rating

Britain's cherished AAA credit status is under threat from the faltering recovery and higher than expected public borrowing, ratings agency Moody's warned yesterday.

RBS and Lloyds may face credit-ratings cut

The tougher regulatory backdrop in the UK could trigger a ratings cut for up to 14 financial institutions, including the Royal Bank of Scotland and its part-nationalised peer, Lloyds, the credit ratings agency Moody's warned yesterday.

Debt woes trigger FTSE losses

Eurozone debt woes and fears over low consumer demand in the United States triggered big losses for the London stock market today.

S&P warns Japan over rating threat after disaster

Standard & Poor (S&P) yesterday threatened to cut Japan's sovereign credit rating again just three months after it last downgraded the country's debt.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 20 February 2015
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003