Moody’s will be the first agency to rate Portugal in 2017

  • ECO News
  • 31 December 2016

Rating agencies have already presented their provisional calendars. DBRS, the only agency to rate Portugal above ‘junk’, will be the last to evaluate the country.

Moody’s will be the first rating agency to assess Portugal, and it should be doing so in January; DBRS, the only rating agency keeping Portugal above the ‘junk’ category, will be the last to evaluate the country.

The four main rating agencies have published their provisional calendars for their 2017 rating updates. Moody’s, currently giving the Portuguese Republic a Ba1 rating with a stable outlook, will assess Portugal on January 13, and also on May 5 and September 1.

Fitch also scheduled their assessment of Portugal’s rating, currently at BB+ with a stable outlook, for February 3, June 16 and December 15.

The third agency to rate Portugal next year will be Standard&Poor’s, who have rated Portugal at BB+ with a stable outlook. The first evaluation in 2017 will be made on March 17 and revised on September 15.

The Canadian DBRS, the only agency currently maintaining Portugal’s rating at BBB (low) with a stable outlook for the country’s credit risk, will only review Portugal on the 21st of April. Their second evaluation will be on October 20.

The evaluation made by rating agencies is the indicator markets pay more attention to, because those ratings allow assessing a country’s ability to pay their debt. The European Central Bank also highly values this rating: ECB demands that, in order to continue purchasing Portugal’s debt and financing the Portuguese banking, at least one of these four rating agencies must give Portugal an investment grade rating.

Rating agencies now have to disclose by the end of each year the calendar for the following year, meaning they are in compliance with Regulation (Eu) No 462/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council, in which is determined the publication of sovereign ratings should be made on a Friday and only after the Stock Market closes, as a way to reduce the risks of market volatility.

However, the calendars disclosed by rating agencies are for information purposes only, meaning the dates can be changed as long as it does not become a habit and as long as they explain the alteration.