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24 Apr 2008
Moody's assigns B3/NP/E+/Baa3.ru ratings to SMP Bank (Russia); Stable outlook
Moscow, April 24, 2008 -- Moody's Investors Service has assigned the following global scale ratings
to SMP Bank: B3 long-term and Not-Prime (NP) short-term
foreign and local currency deposit ratings and an E+ bank financial
strength rating (BFSR). The outlook for all ratings is stable.
At the same time, Moody's Interfax Rating Agency has assigned a
Baa3.ru long-term national scale credit rating (NSR) to
SMP Bank. Moscow-based Moody's Interfax is majority-owned
by Moody's, a leading global rating agency.
The B3/NP/E+ global scale ratings assigned to SMP Bank reflect global
default and loss expectation, while the Baa3.ru national
scale rating reflects the standing of the bank's credit quality relative
to its domestic peers.
According to Moody's, the ratings reflect SMP Bank's
currently limited franchise (which is in Moody's view to a substantial
extent reliant on the bank's shareholders), high credit risk
concentrations, low diversification of the bank's funding base and
potentially volatile profitability although the trend of improving recurring
earnings has been noted. Moody's also notes that SMP Bank's
shareholders' commitment to support the bank's growth and ongoing
regional expansion are likely to strengthen the bank's existing
franchise and further increase the bank's distribution capacities.
The B3/NP foreign currency deposit ratings do not incorporate possible
support from the bank's owners. In Moody's view, although
such support cannot be ruled out, its scope and timeliness are rather
uncertain. Given SMP Bank's size and market position,
any support from the Russian financial authorities is unlikely.
Moody's notes that visible improvement in SMP Bank's franchise and
financial fundamentals, along with further diversification of its
funding base and sustainable reduction of single-party concentrations
in its loan portfolio, could become positive drivers for SMP Bank
's ratings, although an upgrade is not expected in the near term.
On the other hand, any mismanagement of the bank's growth strategy
-- if it were to result in a significant deterioration of asset quality
and financial fundamentals, or loss of market franchise --
could potentially affect negatively SMP Bank 's ratings.
Headquartered in Moscow, Russian Federation, SMP Bank reported
total consolidated assets of RUB17.025 billion (US$656.2
million) and total equity of RUB2.729 billion (US$111.7
million) under Russian accounting rules, and ranked 117th by assets
among Russian banks as of 1 January 2008, according to Interfax.
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Eastern Europe
Telephone: +7 495 641-1881
Facsimile: +7 495 641-1897
Reynold R. Leegerstee
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454
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