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Moody's downgrades NBB and BBK outlook.

Auto Business News-9 January 2009-(C)2009 ENPublishing - http://www.enpublishing.co.uk

Global Banking News - 09 January 2009(c)2005 - Electronic News Publishing - http://www.enpublishing.co.uk

Moody's downgrades NBB and BBK outlook

Moody's Investors Service has changed the outlook of the 'A2' long-term foreign currency deposit ratings of the two largest (rated) commercial banks in Bahrain - National Bank of Bahrain (NBB) and BBK (formerly Bank of Bahrain and Kuwait) -to negative from stable.

The banks' other ratings are unaffected by this action, the rating agency said.

'This rating action follows the change in outlook on Bahrain's A2 foreign currency deposit ceiling to negative from stable on January 6, 2009,' said George Chrysaphinis, a senior analyst, and lead analyst for these two issuers. 'NBB and BBK both have foreign currency deposit ratings situated at the A2 ceiling for such ratings in Bahrain, and this ceiling constrains the ratings of both the banks,' he added.

Headquartered in Manama, the assets of NBB and BBK totalled BHD2.04bn (USD5.43bn) and BHD2.18bn (USD5.80bn) respectively as of September 2008.

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Date:Jan 9, 2009
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