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Rating Action:

Moody's downgraded six notes and confirmed 28 notes in 14 UK RMBS transactions

27 Jul 2020

London, 27 July 2020 -- Moody's Investors Service, ("Moody's") has today downgraded, confirmed and affirmed ratings in 14 UK RMBS transactions. Moody's downgraded the ratings of 2 notes in Polaris 2019-1 plc ("Polaris 2019-1"), 2 notes in Chester A PLC ("Chester A"), 1 note in Stratton Mortgage Funding plc ("Stratton Mortgage") and 1 note in RMAC No.2 plc ("RMAC No.2") plc. The rating downgrades reflect the increased likelihood of deteriorating performance of mortgage loans in the transactions, due to the economic disruption following the coronavirus outbreak. Moody's affirmed the ratings of 53 notes and confirmed the ratings of 28 notes that had sufficient credit enhancement to maintain their current ratings.

Today's rating action concludes the review of 34 notes placed on review for downgrade on 7 May 2020 following an analysis of potential deteriorating performance of the mortgage loans backing the notes due to economic disruption following the coronavirus outbreak (http://www.moodys.com/viewresearchdoc.aspx?docid=PR_424076).

Please click on this link https://www.moodys.com/viewresearchdoc.aspx?docid=PBS_ARFTL429023 for the List of Affected Credit Ratings. This list is an integral part of this Press Release and identifies each affected issuer.

RATINGS RATIONALE

Please click on this link https://www.moodys.com/viewresearchdoc.aspx?docid=PBS_ARFTL429023 for the List of Affected Credit Ratings. This list is an integral part of this Press Release and provides, for each of the credit ratings covered, Moody's disclosures on the following items:

• Key Rationale for Action

The rating downgrades in Polaris 2019-1, Chester A, Stratton Mortgage and RMAC No.2 are prompted by Moody's updated loss expectation in the transactions, reflecting the anticipated worse than expected collateral performance due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The rating confirmations and affirmations announced in this press release reflect sufficient credit enhancement and liquidity to maintain the ratings of the affected notes.

Moody's reassessed its key collateral assumptions, namely the portfolio Expected Loss (EL) and MILAN CE assumptions for all fourteen transactions affected by today's rating action.

The performance of Chester A and Stratton Mortgage has deteriorated since the start of the coronavirus outbreak. Arrears of over 90 days past due as a percentage of current balance in those portfolios has increased, and now stands at 10.7%, and 13.6% respectively. Moreover, mortgages in payment holidays currently represent 43%, and 23% for Chester A and Stratton Mortgage respectively as a proportion of the current pool balance.

By contrast, in RMAC No.2 plc delinquency levels were high at closing, but remain fairly stable, with arrears of over 90 days past due as a percentage of current balance standing at 8.3%, however the portfolio contains a high proportion of restructured loans which historically have been more vulnerable in time of economic downturn, as well as 21% payment holidays as a proportion of the current pool balance. Polaris 2019-1 shows lower levels of delinquency, but is exposed to high portion of self-employed borrowers and borrowers with negative credit history, indicating a relatively weaker borrower credit profile.

After an analysis of the level of coronavirus-related payment holidays and the performance, Moody's increased the EL assumptions as a percentage of original portfolio balance of Polaris 2019-1 to 3.50% from 3.00%, Chester A to 5.50% from 4.00%, Stratton Mortgage to 4.5% from 4.0% and RMAC No.2 to 3.50% from 3.00%. Moody's MILAN CE numbers for Chester A and Stratton Mortgage were increased to 20.00% from 18.50% and to 16.00% from 15.00%, respectively.

Since all four transactions closed less than three years ago, they have only had limited time to build up additional credit enhancement to offset the negative impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Moody's has downgraded the ratings of the notes that were most vulnerable to a temporary increase in arrears and economic disruption.

Moody's also increased the EL assumptions as a percentage of original portfolio balance of the following transactions: HAWKSMOOR MORTGAGE FUNDING 2019-1 PLC to 4.70% from 4.50%, Together Asset Backed Securitisation 2019-1 plc to 7.50% from 7.00% and RMAC No.1 Plc to 3.50% from 3.00% following an analysis of the level of coronavirus-related payment holidays and the anticipated deterioration in performance of those transactions. Moody's maintained the EL assumptions as a percentage of original portfolio balance of the other transactions included in today's action as our current EL assumptions are already commensurate with additional losses arising from an anticipated deterioration in collateral performance. Most of the transactions where we maintained the EL assumption have high seasoning and relatively low loan to value ratios despite high delinquencies to date. Moody's MILAN CE remained otherwise unchanged apart from the two transactions as referenced above.

Moody's assessed the exposure to Natwest Markets Plc acting as swap counterparty in RMAC SECURITIES No. 1 PLC Series 2006-NS2. Moody's analysis considered the risks of additional losses on the notes if they were to become unhedged following a swap counterparty default by using the CR assessment as reference point for swap counterparties. Moody's concluded that the ratings of the M1a , M1c and M2c notes of RMAC SECURITIES No. 1 PLC Series 2006-NS2 notes are constrained by the swap agreement.

Moody's considered how the liquidity available in the transactions and other mitigants support continuity of note payments, in case of servicer default, using the CR assessment as a reference point for servicers. The ratings of the Class A3a, A3b and A3c notes of Kensington Mortgage Securities plc Series 2007-1, the Class B notes of Chester A, the Class B notes in Polaris 2019-1, the A2a and A2c notes in RMAC SECURITIES No. 1 PLC Series 2006-NS2, the A2a notes in RMAC SECURITIES No. 1 PLC Series 2006-NS3 and A2a, A2b and A2c notes of RMAC SECURITIES No. 1 PLC Series 2007-NS1 continue to be constrained by servicer disruption risk.

The rapid spread of the coronavirus outbreak, the government measures put in place to contain it and the deteriorating global economic outlook, have created a severe and extensive credit shock across sectors, regions and markets. Our analysis has considered the effect on the performance of consumer assets from the collapse in the UK economic activity in the second quarter and a gradual recovery in the second half of the year. However, that outcome depends on whether governments can reopen their economies while also safeguarding public health and avoiding a further surge in infections. As a result, the degree of uncertainty around our forecasts is unusually high. We regard the coronavirus outbreak as a social risk under our ESG framework, given the substantial implications for public health and safety.

The principal methodology used in these ratings was "Moody's Approach to Rating RMBS Using the MILAN Framework" published in May 2020 and available at https://www.moodys.com/researchdocumentcontentpage.aspx?docid=PBS_1228742. Alternatively, please see the Rating Methodologies page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.

The analysis undertaken by Moody's at the initial assignment of ratings for RMBS securities may focus on aspects that become less relevant or typically remain unchanged during the surveillance stage. Please see Moody's Approach to Rating RMBS Using the MILAN Framework for further information on Moody's analysis at the initial rating assignment and the on-going surveillance in RMBS.

Factors that would lead to an upgrade or downgrade of the ratings:

Factors or circumstances that could lead to an upgrade of the ratings include (1) performance of the underlying collateral that is better than Moody's expected, (2) an increase in available credit enhancement, (3) improvements in the credit quality of the transaction counterparties and (4) a decrease in sovereign risk.

Factors or circumstances that could lead to a downgrade of the ratings include (1) an increase in sovereign risk, (2) performance of the underlying collateral that is worse than Moody's expected, (3) deterioration in the notes' available credit enhancement and (4) deterioration in the credit quality of the transaction counterparties.

REGULATORY DISCLOSURES

The List of Affected Credit Ratings announced here are all solicited credit ratings. Additionally, the List of Affected Credit Ratings includes additional disclosures that vary with regard to some of the ratings. Please click on this link https://www.moodys.com/viewresearchdoc.aspx?docid=PBS_ARFTL429023 for the List of Affected Credit Ratings. This list is an integral part of this Press Release and provides, for each of the credit ratings covered, Moody's disclosures on the following items:

• Rating Solicitation

• Issuer Participation

• Participation: Access to Management

• Participation: Access to Internal Documents

• Disclosure to Rated Entity

• Endorsement

• Lead Analyst

• Releasing Office

• Person Approving the Credit Rating

• Key Rationale for Action

For further specification of Moody's key rating assumptions and sensitivity analysis, see the sections Methodology Assumptions and Sensitivity to Assumptions in the disclosure form. Moody's Rating Symbols and Definitions can be found at: https://www.moodys.com/researchdocumentcontentpage.aspx?docid=PBC_79004.

The analysis relies on an assessment of collateral characteristics to determine the collateral loss distribution, that is, the function that correlates to an assumption about the likelihood of occurrence to each level of possible losses in the collateral. As a second step, Moody's evaluates each possible collateral loss scenario using a model that replicates the relevant structural features to derive payments and therefore the ultimate potential losses for each rated instrument. The loss a rated instrument incurs in each collateral loss scenario, weighted by assumptions about the likelihood of events in that scenario occurring, results in the expected loss of the rated instrument.

Moody's quantitative analysis entails an evaluation of scenarios that stress factors contributing to sensitivity of ratings and take into account the likelihood of severe collateral losses or impaired cash flows. Moody's weights the impact on the rated instruments based on its assumptions of the likelihood of the events in such scenarios occurring.

For ratings issued on a program, series, category/class of debt or security this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series, category/class of debt, security 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 credit rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular credit 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 credit rating action, and whose ratings may change as a result of this credit 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.

Moody's general principles for assessing environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks in our credit analysis can be found at https://www.moodys.com/researchdocumentcontentpage.aspx?docid=PBC_1133569.

At least one ESG consideration was material to the credit rating action(s) announced and described above.

The below contact information is provided for information purposes only. Please see the ratings tab of the issuer page at www.moodys.com, for each of the ratings covered, Moody's disclosures on the lead rating analyst and the Moody's legal entity that has issued the ratings.

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.

Yunkun Zhang
Associate Lead Analyst
Structured Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
One Canada Square
Canary Wharf
London E14 5FA
United Kingdom
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

Masako Oshima
Associate Managing Director
Structured Finance Group
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

Lam Tran Ngoc
Analyst
Structured Finance Group
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
Client Service: 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
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

No Related Data.
© 2020 Moody's Corporation, Moody's Investors Service, Inc., Moody's Analytics, Inc. and/or their licensors and affiliates (collectively, "MOODY'S"). All rights reserved.

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