Moodys

How Lenders Use Your Hidden Credit Score

After years of suffering, consumer credit is gaining giant momentum, and eager lenders aren't relying solely on your traditional credit score. They need more than that.

Moody's Downgrades UK Rating From AAA to AA1

Credit ratings agency Moody's Investors Service downgraded Britain's government bond rating one notch from the top AAA to AA1 Friday, citing weaknesses in the economy's medium-term outlook. Moody's said "subdued" growth prospects and a "high and rising debt burden" were weighing on the British economy.

Other Countries That Should Be Downgraded

As for downgrades, is the worst over for America? Standard & Poor's managing director John Chambers said just Sunday that another U.S. downgrade can't necessarily be ruled out. 24/7 Wall St. says the U.S. isn't the only country that should put on the watch list.

10 Smart Places to Invest In Case the U.S. Defaults

The odds that the U.S. will default on its debt increase each day, and even if a short-term deal is reached, the ratings agencies may downgrade U.S. debt anyway. If that happens, turmoil could roil the markets. So where can the smart money flee for safety? 24/7 Wall St. offers 10 safe options.

The Financial Landscape: Is Italy the Next Greece?

As the eurozone sovereign debt crisis continues, focus is shifting to Italy as the next potential victim. But for worries closer to home, consider this: $37 billion in U.S. government benefits designed to help people through the downturn will expire by the end of 2011, leaving a hole twice that size in the economy.

Financial Landscape: DSK Case and Portugal Get Shakier

Portugal's economic health is at risk of collapse after Moody's cut its rating of the country's debt to junk status. Also at risk of collapse: The case against former IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn after The New York Post reported that his accuser was working two jobs -- as a maid and a prostitute.

The Financial Landscape: Wins for Wal-Mart, Utilities

The Supreme Court kept up its corporatist streak Monday, handing down two key decisions that were certain to please the Chamber of Commerce. The first helped Wal-Mart quash a massive class action sex discrimination suit; the second stopped states from suing power companies over greenhouse gas emissions.

Rising Auto Sales Drive Sirius XM Subscriber Growth

Sirius XM's first quarter results were strong, with total subscribers up 9% from a year ago to a new high of 20.6 million and adjusted EBITDA of $181 million, up 15% year-over-year. But what should most interest investors are the moves it's making to amplify its growth in the years ahead.

The Financial Landscape: Moody's Mulls Debt Ceiling

Looks like rough sailing ahead: Moody's warned the GOP that its game of chicken with the debt ceiling risked a downgrade of U.S. debt, and the Labor Department said May hiring took a dive. But there are some things investors can look forward to: a Groupon IPO, and the government selling its last shares of Chrysler.

Home Prices Fall to Pre-Bubble Levels

The drop in home values caused by the mortgage crisis has resulted in one positive outcome: Prices have fallen so far that home affordability is back to pre-housing boom levels, reports Moody's Analytics. But a quarter of households with a mortgage are underwater on their loan.

The Mortgage Mess: Blame Banks, Not Homeowners

After an exhaustive examination, DailyFinance's legal reporter comes to a clear verdict: Banks are responsible for 90% of the problem, homeowners 10%. Banks have done three things to create the massive glut of foreclosures choking America's legal systems and laying waste to its real estate markets.

Moody's, S&P May Downgrade U.S. Debt Rating

Moody's Investors Service and Standard & Poor's are both considering downgrading their ratings on U.S. debt because of rising interest-to-revenue ratios, the nation's jobless recovery, and rising Social Security and health care costs, among other factors, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

France's AAA Credit Rating Could Be at Risk

France could lose its top AAA credit rating as Europe%u2019s debt crisis spreads, Bloomberg News reported. "If problems in the euro zone aren%u2019t solved quickly, then the conditions of refinancing will be expensive for these countries and the ratings agencies will do more downgrades," Ralf Ahrens, who helps manage about $20 billion as head of fixed income at Frankfurt Trust, told Bloomberg News. "We already see these dynamics in the market. I see France as a risk."

Moody's Downgrades Hungary to Near Junk

Moody's downgrades Hungary's sovereign credit rating by two notches to near junk on concern that the temporary measures the government is taking to address budget issues won't be sustainable.

Fitch Downgrades Ireland

A day after Moody's Investors Service announced it was putting Ireland under review for a possible downgrade, Fitch Ratings lowered the country's credit grade to A from AA-. Fitch's downgrade was prompted by the government's announcement last week it is pledging more money -- as much as %u20AC50 billion -- to save Ireland's banks, in addition to uncertainty over the country's economic recovery.

Moody's Warns It May Cut Ireland's Credit Rating

Less than a week after downgrading Spain's credit rating, Moody's Investors Service warned it might cut Ireland's credit rating as well. Moody's said its decision to review Ireland's rating was prompted by the government's announcement last week that it was pledging more money -- as much as %u20AC50 billion -- to save the country's banks, as well as the weak economic recovery and rising borrowing costs.

Flawed Incentives Were the Rot Behind the Mortgage Crisis

The mortgage-backed securities meltdown whose effects still haunt our economy sprang from a simple cause: The rules of the game gave big incentives to every player involved to ignore the problems and keep collecting their fees. And despite financial reform, those rules haven't changed much.

Thanks to Austerity Moves, Britain Keeps Its AAA Rating

The government of British Prime Minister David Cameron won a key vote of confidence from the financial community Monday when Moody's Investors Services announced that it would continue to apply a AAA rating to the country's debt, despite its severe economic dislocation.

Moodys: U.K. Credit Rating Is Safe

The U.K.'s triple-A credit rating is safe, thanks to the government's austerity measures and a flexible economy, rating agency Moody%u2019s said.

Buffett Sells More Moody's Shares

Warren Buffett continued to sell his stake in Moody's, the credit ratings agency faulted for contributing to the financial crisis because of the rating it issued to new and complex high-risk investments during the height of the housing bubble.

Stimulus Helped the Economy, but It Won't Matter in November

Economists say the Obama administration's stimulus program actually saved the country's economy from plunging into the Great Depression 2.0. Yet that news will likely fail to sway voters who believe the current administration didn't do enough to support the economy.