SA junk rat­ing seems in­evitable – econ­o­mists

CityPress - - Business -

Should South Africa avoid hav­ing its credit rat­ing cut to “junk” in the next two weeks, it could just be staving off the in­evitable.

More than half of 12 econ­o­mists sur­veyed by Bloomberg said S&P Global Rat­ings would strip the na­tion of its in­vest­ment-level rat­ing. The me­dian prob­a­bil­ity of South Africa re­tain­ing its cur­rent as­sess­ment is 45%, fall­ing to only 20% in 2017, the sur­vey shows.

South Africa faces a cut to junk on its for­eign-cur­rency credit rat­ing as out­put is fore­cast to ex­pand at the slow­est pace this year since 2009, de­lay­ing the gov­ern­ment’s plans to nar­row the short­fall on the bud­get and rein in debt.

S&P is sched­uled to an­nounce its as­sess­ment – which is at the low­est in­vest­ment grade and has a neg­a­tive out­look – on De­cem­ber 2 and Moody’s In­vestors Ser­vice will pub­lish the re­view of its rat­ing, cur­rently one level higher than S&P’s, on November 25.

Fitch Rat­ings hasn’t yet set a date for its as­sess­ment. – Bloomberg

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