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Rating Action:

MOODY'S UPGRADES FOREIGN CURRENCY BOND RATINGS OF 15 BRAZILIAN BANKS

18 Dec 2001
MOODY'S UPGRADES FOREIGN CURRENCY BOND RATINGS OF 15 BRAZILIAN BANKS

New York, December 18, 2001 -- Moody's Investors Service has upgraded the long-term foreign currency bond ratings of 15 Brazilian banks (see complete list below). This action concludes the review for upgrade on the banks' foreign currency bond ratings that was announced in June 2001; this review resulted from Moody's decision to allow the ratings of bonds and notes of certain qualified issuers to pierce their respective country ceilings.

The upgrade affects Brazilian banks whose outstanding long-term foreign currency bonds have been rated by Moody's, and elegible bonds are those subject to international law (New York, U.K. or Luxembourg). The rating outlook is stable. Moody's emphasized that the change in country ceiling policy does not affect the foreign currency bank deposit ratings of Brazilian banks, which are currently at the country ceiling levels.

Moody's stated that the revised foreign-currency bond ratings incorporate the banks' respective fundamental credit quality, which is reflected by the global local currency rating and which includes all relevant country risks. The ratings also reflect the probability of a sovereign default implied by the Brazilian government's sub-investment-grade B1 foreign currency bond rating, and the likelihood that the Brazilian government could impose a debt moratorium in the event of default on its own foreign currency obligations.

The ratings also address the risk that any such moratorium might include foreign currency bonds and that the banks' bonds might particularly be affected. Because the banking system is an arm of government's monetary and foreign exchange policy, Moody's believes that, in general, banks may have a lower probability of having their bonds exempted from a moratorium than, say, a major commodity exporter.

The ratings, therefore, indicate the joint probabilities of default that are contained in the foreign currency ceiling and in the local currency rating of individual issuers. A discussion of the rationale behind these credit evaluations are detailed in Moody's recently published report "Emerging Market Bank Ratings in Local and Foreign Currency: The Implications of Country Risk and Institutional Support", and in Moody's rating methodology "Revised Country Ceiling Policy".

The following debt ratings have been upgraded:

Banco Bradesco S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco Bradesco S.A. Grand Cayman Branch: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Unibanco-Uniao de Bancos Brasileiros S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Unibanco Leasing S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt,upgraded from B1

Unibanco-Uniao de Bancos Brasileiros S.A. Grand Cayman Branch: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco Safra S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Safra Leasing S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco Safra Grand Cayman Branch: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

BankBoston Banco Múltiplo S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco do Brasil S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Lloyds Bank Plc (Brasil): Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco Barclays e Galicia S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt ,upgraded from B1

Banco Sudameris Brasil S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco Bozano, Simonsen S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco do Nordeste S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco AGF Braseg S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco CSFB Garantia S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Brazil S.A.: Ba2 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Banco Votorantim S.A.: Ba3 long- term foreign currency debt, upgraded from B1

Rated bonds for Banco ABN Amro Real, which had also been placed on review for possible upgrade, matured in October 10, 2001.

New York
Gregory W. Bauer
Managing Director
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

New York
M. Celina Vansetti
Vice President - Senior Analyst
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

No Related Data.
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