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Response to Demeter (Reply #28)

Tue Jan 17, 2012, 07:35 AM

38. Europe Bailout Fund Says It Has Enough Cash to Deal With Sovereign Crisis

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-01-16/s-p-cuts-efs-facility-to-aa-from-aaa.html

European officials said the euro region’s temporary bailout facility has enough funds to deal with the sovereign debt crisis after losing its top credit rating at Standard & Poor’s.

“The EFSF has sufficient means to fulfil its commitments under current and potential future adjustment programs,” said Klaus Regling, chief executive officer of the European Financial Stability Facility, said in an e-mail late yesterday. S&P cut its rating on the EFSF to AA+ from AAA. The first test of the cut will come at 12 p.m. in Brussels when the EFSF sells bills.

The EFSF, designed to fund rescue packages for Greece, Ireland and Portugal partially with bond sales, owed its AAA rating to guarantees from its sponsoring nations. Two of those sovereigns, France and Austria, were cut on Jan. 13 to AA+ from AAA by S&P, which also downgraded seven other euro countries.

“The EFSF’s obligations are no longer fully supported either by guarantees from EFSF members rated AAA by S&P, or by AAA rated securities,” S&P said. “Credit enhancements sufficient to offset what we view as the reduced creditworthiness of guarantors are currently not in place.”

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