x

Coronavirus

Agencies Lower Outlook of Greece’s Credit Rating to Stable

April 26, 2020

ATHENS — Standard & Poor’s and Fitch ratings agencies have lowered their outlook on Greece’s credit rating, from positive to stable, amid the financial impact the coronavirus measures are taking on the country’s economy.

In a report late Friday, Standard & Poor’s kept the country’s rating unchanged at BB- a day after Fitch also kept Greece at the BB level it had upgraded it to in January.

Greece has been gradually emerging from a decade-long financial crisis that wiped out a quarter of its economy, and its credit rating is still two to four notches below investment grade for major rating agencies, although it has seen some upgrades.

Greece saw its ratings plunge in 2010, when it was revealed that key financial data had been misreported and the budget deficit would be several times the initial forecast. The country lost market access as investors shunned its bonds, and was forced to sign a series of international bailouts to keep afloat.

Fitch said its revision of the outlook to stable “reflects the significant impact of the COVID-19 crisis on economic activity, the public finances and external accounts.”

The ratings agency expects Greece’s gross domestic product to fall by 8.1% this year, “reflecting the necessary restrictive measures to slow the spread of the pandemic, the global recession and sharp fall in tourism,” which is a major industry in the country. It said it expects “some recovery in activity” in the second half of 2020 and in 2021, and predicted GDP growth reaching 5.1% next year.

“The extent of the fall in GDP and subsequent recovery are highly uncertain. There are downside risks to our projections around the extent and duration of the coronavirus outbreak,” Fitch said. “Prolonged lockdown periods or a second wave of infections in Greece and other European countries would imply much larger declines in output in 2020 and a weaker recovery in 2021.”

RELATED

NEW YORK (AP) — President Joe Biden promised to distribute hundreds of millions of free COVID-19 tests and to open more testing sites to fight surging infections, but the stepped-up efforts will not come in time for people who want to find out if they are infected before the holidays.

Top Stories

Church

OCEAN, NJ – Rafaella Lambrinos, whose family is from Karpathos originally, spoke with The National Herald about the Adopt a Yiayia and Pappou program she founded at St George Greek Orthodox Church in Ocean, NJ, which connects youth and seniors from her church community through weekly phone conversations.

Associations

NEW YORK – Greek-American Trevor Zegras, forward for the Anaheim Ducks is set to play in his first NHL game in New York City against the Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday, March 15, 7 PM.

General News

WASHINGTON, DC – AHEPA deeply mourns the passing of Past Supreme President and co-founder of AHEPA National Housing Corporation (ANHC) Nick Smyrnis.

Video

1 Killed, 8 Hurt as Suspected Gas Explosion Hits Bronx Home

NEW YORK — A suspected gas explosion partially collapsed a home in the Bronx, setting the structure ablaze and killing a woman and injuring eight other people, including five police officers, officials said.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.