S&P Affirms U.S. Ratings; Raises Outlook to Stable

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed its 'AA+' long-term and 'A-1+' short-term unsolicited sovereign credit ratings on the United States of America. The outlook on the long-term rating is revised to stable from negative.


"Our sovereign credit ratings on the U.S. primarily reflect our view of the strengths of the U.S. economy and monetary system, as well as the U.S.
dollar's status as the world's key reserve currency," says the agency on its website.


The agency expects the US economy to grow at the same pace or better than its peers.


S&P notes that the stronger-than-expected private sector growth as well as improved government finances due to large payments from mortage financers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have lowered forecasts for US deficits.


"We believe that the US monetary authorities have both the strong ability and willingness to support sustainable economic growth and to attenuate major economic or financial shocks," S&P said.


S&P downgraded the US from AAA in August 2011 as Democrats fought to a standstill over increasing the borrowing ceiling, necessary to finance the ongoing fiscal deficit.


It also placed and kept the country on a negative outlook, saying the political stalemate was compromising its ability to implement needed deficit reduction strategies.


"The stable outlook indicates our appraisal that some of the downside risks to our 'AA+' rating on the U.S. have receded to the point that the likelihood  that we will lower the rating in the near term is less than one in three."


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