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Rating Action:

Moody's assigns Aaa/MR2 rating to Morley Liquidity Funds, Plc -- Sterling Liquidity Enhanced Fund

03 Dec 2007
Moody's assigns Aaa/MR2 rating to Morley Liquidity Funds, Plc -- Sterling Liquidity Enhanced Fund

London, 03 December 2007 -- Moody's Investors Service has assigned an Aaa bond fund credit rating and MR2 market risk rating to Morley Liquidity Funds, Plc -- Sterling Liquidity Enhanced Fund ("the Fund"). The credit rating reflects the high credit quality of the portfolio, together with Morley Fund Management Limited's consistent and iterative investment process and sound compliance and risk management structure while the market risk rating reflects the Fund's low sensitivity to changing interest rates and other market conditions.

The objective of the Fund is to provide investors with an investment return, benchmarked against the 7-Day LIBID rate, with a low level of volatility while maintaining liquidity. The Fund aims to achieve this objective by investing in a diversified portfolio of Sterling-denominated short-term debt and debt-related instruments. These investments include fixed or floating rate instruments including certificates of deposit, commercial paper, floating rate notes, freely transferable promissory notes, debentures, asset-backed securities and bonds. In line with Moody's guidelines for a Aaa bond fund credit rating, the Fund will only invest in debt instruments with ratings of at least P-1/A2 or equivalent and the weighted average expected loss of the Fund will be equal to or lower than that of an Aaa-rated, 3-year security. The Fund's bond fund credit rating is further supported by the fact that a credit analyst with experience in the analysis of asset-backed securities performs credit risk analysis and monitoring of the asset-backed securities in which the Fund invests.

The Fund's MR2 market risk rating incorporates a range of factors affecting the expected volatility of its net asset value. Although the maximum final maturity for fixed rate securities is up to 10 years, the Fund will have a duration of no more than 365 days while on average the target weighted average maturity of the Fund will be between 40 and 60 days. Thus, the Fund benefits from a limited sensitivity to interest rates as it maintains a very short weighted average maturity. In addition, the Fund is not exposed to currency or derivative risks. The Fund, however, expects to achieve its performance target through an allocation to longer-dated floating rate notes, largely consisting of asset backed securities, thereby exposing the Fund to prepayment and extension risk and spread duration risk and increasing the likely volatility of the Fund's net asset value. The Fund's liquidity is adequate, given its T+3 settlement period and stable shareholder base.

The Fund is a sub-fund of Morley Liquidity Funds, plc, an open-ended umbrella investment company established in Dublin, which operates in accordance with the UCITS III Directive. Morley Fund Management currently manages GBP16 billion in cash strategies and has over GBP3billion in the existing Sterling Liquidity Fund. The new Sterling Liquidity Enhanced Fund, expected to reach GBP2 billion by the end of the year, will be managed by the Money Markets Team at Morley Fund Management Limited, a member of Aviva plc. The administrator is PFPC International Limited and the custodian is PFPC Bank Limited.

Moody's money market and bond fund credit ratings are opinions of the investment quality of shares in mutual funds and similar investment vehicles, which principally invest in short-term and long-term fixed income obligations, respectively. The ratings are not intended to consider the prospective performance of a fund with respect to appreciation, volatility of net asset value, or yield. Funds rated Aaa are judged to be of an investment quality similar to Aaa-rated fixed income obligations -- that is, they are judged to be of the best quality. Moody's fund Market Risk (MR) rating is an opinion of the relative degree of volatility of a fund's net asset value (NAV). In forming an opinion on the fund's future price volatility, Moody's analysts consider risk elements that may have an effect on a fund's net asset value such as: interest rate risk, prepayment and extension risk, liquidity and concentration risks, currency risk, and derivatives risk. The rating is not intended to consider prospective performance of a fund with respect to price appreciation or yield. Funds rated MR2 are judged to have low sensitivity to changing interest rates and other market conditions.

London
MIchael Eberhardt
Asst Vice President - Analyst
Structured Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

London
Kathryn Kerle
VP - Senior Credit Officer
Structured Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

No Related Data.
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