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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.

Moody's warns of worse to come as it cuts Portugal rating

Portugal was dealt a blow yesterday as Moody's cut its credit rating, warning the economy would weaken further in the next few years.

Business Diary: S&P does the dirty on Moody's

There really is no loyalty in this world any more. You can see why people might have concerns about the outlook for Moody's, the credit ratings agency. All that regulatory scrutiny following the financial crisis can't be healthy for it, and Europe is mulling setting up its own rival to the big American firms. These are hardly auspicious times. Still, Moody's must be a little put out to see its own credit rating put on negative watch by rival Standard & Poor's. Presumably we can expect it to return the favour?

BP says oil spill costs have reached $2 billion

BP PLC said today that its partners in the leaking Gulf of Mexico oil well must share responsibility for the costs in dealing with the disaster, on which BP said it has now spent $2 billion.



Partner puts blame on BP as spill costs grow

BP Plc's costs for the worst oil spill in US history appeared set to rise as a partner in the out-of-control well laid the blame at BP's feet and the new federal tsar overseeing damage claims said BP would pay more if $20 billion (£13.5m) was not enough.

BP credit rating cut amid oil spill cost fears

Beleaguered oil giant BP came under more pressure today after its credit rating was cut amid fears over the soaring cost of the Gulf of Mexico disaster.

Wall Street bullied us, claim ratings agency staff

Staff at the credit ratings agency Moody's were bullied by Wall Street bankers, harassed by profit-hungry bosses and starved of the time and resources they could have used to check their disastrous ratings of mortgage derivatives, an inquiry into the causes of the credit crisis was told.

Summoned to New York, Buffett backs ally

The fundamental reason for Moody's disastrously optimistic credit ratings on billions of dollars of mortgage derivatives was not fraud or conflicts of interest, but simply the failure to predict a nationwide housing market collapse in the US, Warren Buffett said yesterday – and even he hadn't predicted such a thing.

Moody: 'I've had a great run at Leicester but at Bath we'll go from strength to strength'

As he faces the club he will join next season, Lewis Moody tells Chris Hewett why he senses an shift in the balance of power

The make-or-break power of ratings agencies

Moody's, Fitch and S&P can shake up the markets and change a country's fortunes – but is it time to curb their influence, asks Nikhil Kumar

Leading article: Credit where it isn't due

The 2008 banking meltdown revealed the credit rating agencies, those supposedly independent custodians of the global capital markets, to be incompetent. At the heart of that crisis two years ago were billions of dollars of securities made up of subprime mortgages which these agencies – Moody's, Standard & Poor's, and Fitch – had judged to be entirely safe. They were, of course, anything but. And those banks and financial firms that had crammed their balance sheets with these securities suddenly found themselves to be insolvent.

Tory claims that hung parliament would cause meltdown are dismissed

Credit rating agency rejects warning that Britain would be plunged into financial crisis if election result is inconclusive

Moody's cuts credit rating on Greece's debt

Greece's credit rating has been cut to A3 by Moody's Investors Service.

Europe markets rattled as Fitch lowers Portugal's credit rating

Stock markets tumble as debt worries prompt agency to cut rating to AA minus

Moody's says Britain's AAA credit rating is safe – for now

As he completes preparations for what could be one of the toughest Budgets in years, Alistair Darling has been treated to an unfamiliar chorus of encouraging news from the credit ratings agency Moody's, Bank of England policy maker Kate Barker and the gilts market.

Moody stuns Tigers by signing for Bath

Leicester hit by England flanker's decision to head to the Rec for next season
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Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent