TEXT-S&P Lowers Ratings On National Bank of Canada To 'A-/A-2'
-- We believe that the Canadian banking sector is encountering incremental pressure from headwinds facing the Canadian economy, which is heightening economic risk in the banking system.
-- We also believe industry risk for the Canadian banking sector is increasing. We expect that intensifying competition for loans and deposits will lead to pressure on profitability growth, especially in banks' retail businesses.
-- We are lowering our long- and short-term issuer credit ratings on National Bank of Canada to 'A-/A-2' from 'A/A-1', following our revision of the stand-alone credit profile on the bank to 'a-' from 'a'. The outlook is stable.
-- The stable outlook reflects our expectation that National Bank of Canada's credit fundamentals will remain consistent with current ratings over the next 24 months.
On Dec. 13, 2012, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services downgraded its long- and short-term issuer credit ratings on National Bank of Canada to 'A-/A-2' from 'A/A-1'. The outlook is stable. In addition, Standard & Poor's lowered its issue ratings on National Bank's senior unsecured debt to 'A-' from 'A', nondeferrable subordinated debt to 'BBB+' from 'A-', and preferred shares and hybrid securities to 'BBB' from 'BBB+'.