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Rating Action:

Moody's Takes Various Actions on Two Italian Lease ABS backed by Comifin- and A-Leasing S.p.A.-originated instalments

20 Jun 2013

London, 20 June 2013 -- Moody's Investors Service has today affirmed the ratings of the Class A and Class B notes and confirmed the ratings of the Class C notes, in Pharma Finance 2 S.r.l. Sufficient levels of credit enhancement, which protect against sovereign and counterparty risk, primarily drove the rating actions.

At the same time, Moody's affirmed the ratings of the Class A notes and downgraded the ratings of the Class B and the Class C notes in A-Leasing Finance S.r.l. Insufficient credit enhancement to address sovereign risk and exposure to counterparty risk has prompted today's negative rating actions.

Both transactions are Italian asset-backed securities (ABS) transaction backed by lease instalments. In addition, Pharma Finance 2 is backed by a small portion of loans. The instalments in Pharma Finance 2 were originated by Comifin S.p.A. (unrated) and extended to Italian pharmacists only whereas the instalments in A-Leasing Finance were originated by A-Leasing S.p.A. (unrated) and extended to borrowers in different industries. Today's rating actions conclude the reviews for downgrade initiated by Moody's on 02 August 2012 and 13 March 2013, respectively.

For a detailed list of the affected ratings, see towards the end of the ratings rationale section.

RATINGS RATIONALE

-- Pharma Finance 2

Today's rating actions on Pharma Finance 2 primarily reflect 1) the availability of sufficient credit enhancement to address sovereign and increased counterparty risk and 2) the good performance of the deal, which is in line with Moody's expectation. The current credit enhancement levels are 97.2% for the Class A notes, 55.5% for Class B notes and 21.1% for the Class C notes. Credit enhancement has built up to these levels as a result of the deleveraging since the end of the revolving period in May 2007, as evidenced by the low pool factor of 7.5%.

The introduction of new adjustments to Moody's modelling assumptions to account for the effect of deterioration in sovereign creditworthiness has had no negative effect on the ratings in this transaction.

-- A-Leasing Finance

Today's rating actions on A-Leasing Finance primarily reflect 1) the lack of sufficient credit enhancement to address sovereign and increased counterparty risk and 2) the worse-than-expected performance since its closing in June 2008. The current credit enhancement levels are 64.9% for the Class A notes, 42.4% for Class B notes and 20.2% for the Class C notes. In contrast to Pharma Finance 2 the credit enhancement levels for the Class B and the Class C notes in A-Leasing Finance are insufficient to mitigate sovereign and counterparty risk which has resulted in today's downgrades.

The introduction of new adjustments to Moody's modelling assumptions to account for the effect of deterioration in sovereign creditworthiness mainly lead to these rating actions.

-- Additional Factors Better Reflect Increased Sovereign Risk

Moody's has supplemented its analysis to determine the loss distribution of securitised portfolios with two additional factors, the maximum achievable rating in a given country (the local currency country risk ceiling) and the applicable portfolio credit enhancement for this rating. With the introduction of these additional factors, Moody's intends to better reflect increased sovereign risk in its quantitative analysis, in particular for mezzanine and junior tranches.

The Italian country ceiling is A2, which is the maximum rating that Moody's will assign to a domestic Italian issuer including structured finance transactions backed by Italian receivables. The portfolio credit enhancement represents the required credit enhancement under the senior tranche for it to achieve the country ceiling. By lowering the maximum achievable rating, the revised methodology alters the loss distribution curve and implies an increased probability of high loss scenarios.

Under the updated methodology incorporating sovereign risk on ABS transactions, loss distribution volatility increases to capture increased sovereign-related risks. Given the expected loss of a portfolio and the shape of the loss distribution, the combination of the highest achievable rating in a country for structured finance and the applicable credit enhancement for this rating uniquely determine the volatility of the portfolio distribution, which the coefficient of variation (CoV) typically measures for ABS transactions. A higher applicable credit enhancement for a given rating ceiling or a lower rating ceiling with the same applicable credit enhancement both translate into a higher CoV.

-- Moody's Revises Key Collateral Assumptions

Following Moody's update of its methodology, the rating agency increased the CoV, which is a measure of volatility, in Pharma Finance 2, to 150.5% from 74.0%. Together with the unchanged assumptions on the mean default probability of 3.0% on current pool balance and the recovery rate of 30.0%, this volatility increase corresponds to a portfolio credit enhancement of 20.0%.

Following Moody's update of its methodology, the rating agency increased the CoV in A-Leasing Finance to 49.6% from 40.0%. Together with the unchanged assumptions on the mean default probability of 23.0% on current pool balance and the recovery rate of 50.0%, this volatility increase corresponds to a portfolio credit enhancement of 26.0%.

Moody's maintained its default and recovery rate assumptions for these transactions, which it updated on 18 December 2012 (see "Moody's updates key collateral assumptions in Italian ABS transactions backed by portfolio of leases and loans to SME" [http://www.moodys.com/research/Moodys-updates-key-collateral-assumptions-in-Italian-ABS-transactions-backed--PR_262510]).

-- Counterparty Exposure

The conclusion of Moody's rating reviews also takes into consideration the counterparty exposure .

Comifin acts as servicer and Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank (A2/P-1) as swap counterparty and issuer account bank in Pharma Finance 2. Collections are transferred monthly from the collection account to the issuer account. The reserve fund represents 21.1% of the current pool balance.

A-Leasing. acts as servicer, BNP Paribas S.A. (A2/P-1) as swap counterparty and BNP Paribas Securities Services (A2-P-1) as issuer account bank in A-Leasing Finance. Collections are transferred to the issuer account every time there is an amount higher than ?50,000 in the collection account. The reserve fund is fully depleted whereas the debt reserve account accounts for 4.2% of the current pool balance and is also held at BNP Paribas Securities Services.

Moody's has incorporated into its analysis the potential default of the servicer, which could expose the transactions to a commingling loss on the collections and to a loss of the monies held in the reserve account.

In addition, Moody's considered the potential effect of originator insolvency on the recoveries in both transactions. If the originator became insolvent, Moody's would expect recoveries on defaulted lease contracts to be approximately 15%.

The rating agency also assessed the exposure to the swap counterparties in both transactions, which does not have a negative effect on the rating levels at this time.

-- Other Developments May Negatively Affect the Notes

In consideration of Moody's new adjustments, any further sovereign downgrade would negatively affect structured finance ratings through the application of the country ceiling or maximum achievable rating, as well as potentially increased portfolio credit enhancement requirements for a given rating.

As the euro area crisis continues, the ratings of structured finance notes remain exposed to the uncertainties of credit conditions in the general economy. The deteriorating creditworthiness of euro area sovereigns as well as the weakening credit profile of the global banking sector could further negatively affect the ratings of the notes.

Moody's describes additional factors that may affect the ratings in the Request for Comment, "Approach to Assessing Linkage to Swap Counterparties in Structured Finance Cashflow Transactions: Request for Comment", 02 July 2012.

In reviewing these transactions, Moody's used ABSROM to model the cash flows and determine the loss for each tranche. The cash flow model evaluates all default scenarios that are then weighted considering the probabilities of the inverse-normal distribution assumed for the portfolio default rate. In each default scenario, Moody's calculates the corresponding loss for each class of notes given the incoming cash flows from the assets and the outgoing payments to third parties and noteholders. Therefore, the expected loss for each tranche is the sum product of the probability of the occurrence of each default scenario and the loss derived from the cash flow model in each default scenario for each tranche.

As such, Moody's analysis encompasses the assessment of stressed scenarios.

When remodelling these transactions affected by today's rating action, Moody's adjusted some inputs to reflect the new approach described above.

METHODOLOGIES

The methodologies used in these ratings were "Moody's Approach to Rating Multi-Pool Financial Lease-Backed Transactions in Italy", published in June 2006, "Moody's Approach to Rating EMEA SME Balance Sheet Securitisations", published in May 2013, and "The Temporary Use of Cash in Structured Finance Transactions: Eligible Investment and Bank Guidelines", published in March 2013. Please see the Credit Policy page on www.moodys.com for a copy of these methodologies.

The revised approach to incorporating country risk changes into structured finance ratings forms part of the relevant asset class methodologies, which Moody's updated and republished or supplemented on 11 March 2013 ("Incorporating Sovereign Risk into Multi-Pool Financial Lease-Backed Transactions in Italy"), along with the publication of its Special Comment "Structured Finance Transactions: Assessing the Impact of Sovereign Risk".

LIST OF AFFECTED RATINGS

Issuer: A-Leasing Finance S.r.l

....EUR230.85M A Notes, Affirmed A2 (sf); previously on Aug 2, 2012 Downgraded to A2 (sf)

....EUR30.2M B Notes, Downgraded to Baa2 (sf); previously on Jun 13, 2008 Assigned A2 (sf)

....EUR29.85M C Notes, Downgraded to B1 (sf); previously on Mar 13, 2013 Baa2 (sf) Placed Under Review for Possible Downgrade

Issuer: Pharma Finance 2 S.r.l.

....EUR123.3M A Notes, Affirmed A2 (sf); previously on Aug 2, 2012 Downgraded to A2 (sf)

....EUR8.2M B Notes, Affirmed A2 (sf); previously on Nov 16, 2005 Definitive Rating Assigned A2 (sf)

....EUR5.5M C Notes, Confirmed at Baa2 (sf); previously on Aug 2, 2012 Baa2 (sf) Placed Under Review for Possible Downgrade

REGULATORY DISCLOSURES

Moody's did not receive or take into account a third-party assessment on the due diligence performed regarding the underlying assets or financial instruments related to the monitoring of these transactions in the past six months.

For ratings issued on a program, series or category/class of debt, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series or category/class of debt or pursuant to a program for which the ratings are derived exclusively from existing ratings in accordance with Moody's rating practices. For ratings issued on a support provider, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular rating action for securities that derive their credit ratings from the support provider's credit rating. For provisional ratings, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the provisional rating assigned, and in relation to a definitive rating that may be assigned subsequent to the final issuance of the debt, in each case where the transaction structure and terms have not changed prior to the assignment of the definitive rating in a manner that would have affected the rating. For further information please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page for the respective issuer on www.moodys.com.

For any affected securities or rated entities receiving direct credit support from the primary entity(ies) of this rating action, and whose ratings may change as a result of this rating action, the associated regulatory disclosures will be those of the guarantor entity. Exceptions to this approach exist for the following disclosures, if applicable to jurisdiction: Ancillary Services, Disclosure to rated entity, Disclosure from rated entity.

Regulatory disclosures contained in this press release apply to the credit rating and, if applicable, the related rating outlook or rating review.

Please see www.moodys.com for any updates on changes to the lead rating analyst and to the Moody's legal entity that has issued the rating.

Please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for additional regulatory disclosures for each credit rating.

Anne-Sophie Spirito
Asst Vice President - Analyst
Structured Finance Group
Moody's France SAS
96 Boulevard Haussmann
Paris 75008
France
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Monica Curti
Vice President - Senior Analyst
Structured Finance Group
Telephone:+39-02-9148-1100

Sebastian Schranz
Analyst
Structured Finance Group
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Releasing Office:
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
One Canada Square
Canary Wharf
London E14 5FA
United Kingdom
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Moody's Takes Various Actions on Two Italian Lease ABS backed by Comifin- and A-Leasing S.p.A.-originated instalments
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