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Rating Action:

Moody's downgrades Fifth Third (senior to A2); ratings are on review

22 Jan 2009

New York, January 22, 2009 -- Moody's Investors Service downgraded the long-term deposit and debt ratings of Fifth Third Bancorp (Fifth Third) and its subsidiaries. Moody's lowered the ratings at Fifth Third's lead banks as follows: bank financial strength to B- from B and deposit and senior debt ratings to A1 from Aa3. At the holding company, Moody's downgraded the senior debt rating to A2 from A1. All Prime-1 short-term ratings were affirmed at both the banks and the holding company. Following the downgrade, the ratings are on review for further downgrade, with the exception of the Prime-1 short-term rating at the lead banks.

The downgrade of Fifth Third follows the company's huge net charge-off rate for the fourth quarter of 2008 that reflects a pace of asset quality deterioration beyond Moody's prior expectations. Through a combination of losses on loans that were sold or moved to held-for-sale, and increasing charge-offs throughout its commercial construction and commercial mortgage loan portfolios, Fifth Third's annualized net charge-off rate was 7.5% of loans during the quarter. Most of the deterioration was concentrated in Michigan and Florida.

The rating review will focus on the likely magnitude of Fifth Third's near-term credit costs and its profitability prospects in a historically challenging credit and real estate market. In addition to Fifth Third's commercial and residential real estate assets, Moody's will focus on the bank's commercial and industrial loan portfolio, which has come under above average stress due to local economic weakness. As a result, Moody's expects 2009 credit losses to remain high for Fifth Third. Moreover, given the challenging 2009 outlook, Fifth Third's return to profitability -- it has reported three consecutive quarterly losses -- is not clear, thus potentially undermining its capital position.

Somewhat countering these challenges, Moody's noted that Fifth Third's aggressive loan loss provisioning in 2008 noticeably increased its reserve coverage for non-performing assets. In addition, Fifth Third's capital position strengthened during 2008 and its near-elimination of the common stock dividend will help preserve capital going forward.

Moody's last rating action on Fifth Third was on September 18, 2008 when Fifth Third was downgraded to A1 from Aa3 for senior debt and the rated bank subsidiaries were downgraded to B from B+ for bank financial strength and to Aa3 from Aa2 for long-term deposits and senior debt.

The principal methodologies used in rating this issuer were "Bank Financial Strength Ratings: Global Methodology" (February 2007) and "Incorporation of Joint-Default Analysis into Moody's Bank Ratings: A Refined Methodology" (March 2007), which can be found at www.moodys.com in the Credit Policy & Methodologies directory, in the Ratings Methodologies subdirectory. Other methodologies and factors that may have been considered in the process of rating this issuer can also be found in the Credit Policy & Methodologies directory.

Downgrades:

..Issuer: CNB Capital Trust I

....Preferred Stock Preferred Stock, Downgraded to A3 from A2

..Issuer: Fifth Third Bancorp

....Issuer Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

....Multiple Seniority Shelf, Downgraded to a range of (P)Baa1 to (P)A2 from a range of (P)A3 to (P)A1

....Preferred Stock Preferred Stock, Downgraded to Baa1 from A3

....Subordinate Regular Bond/Debenture, Downgraded to A3 from A2

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, Downgraded to A2 from A1

..Issuer: Fifth Third Bank, Michigan

....Bank Financial Strength Rating, Downgraded to B- from B

....Issuer Rating, Downgraded to A1 from Aa3

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to A1 from Aa3

....Multiple Seniority Bank Note Program, Downgraded to a range of A2 to A1 from a range of A1 to Aa3

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to A1 from Aa3

..Issuer: Fifth Third Bank, Ohio

....Bank Financial Strength Rating, Downgraded to B- from B

....Issuer Rating, Downgraded to A1 from Aa3

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to A1 from Aa3

....Multiple Seniority Bank Note Program, Downgraded to a range of A2 to A1 from a range of A1 to Aa3

....Subordinate Regular Bond/Debenture, Downgraded to A2 from A1

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Program, Downgraded to A1 from Aa3

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, Downgraded to A1 from Aa3

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to A1 from Aa3

..Issuer: Fifth Third Capital Trust II

....Preferred Stock Shelf, Downgraded to (P)A3 from (P)A2

..Issuer: Fifth Third Capital Trust IV

....Preferred Stock Preferred Stock, Downgraded to A3 from A2

....Preferred Stock Shelf, Downgraded to (P)A3 from (P)A2

..Issuer: Fifth Third Capital Trust V

....Preferred Stock Preferred Stock, Downgraded to A3 from A2

....Preferred Stock Shelf, Downgraded to (P)A3 from (P)A2

..Issuer: Fifth Third Capital Trust VI

....Preferred Stock Preferred Stock, Downgraded to A3 from A2

....Preferred Stock Shelf, Downgraded to (P)A3 from (P)A2

..Issuer: Fifth Third Capital Trust VII

....Preferred Stock Preferred Stock, Downgraded to A3 from A2

On Review for Possible Downgrade:

..Issuer: Fifth Third Bancorp

....Commercial Paper, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently P-1

Outlook Actions:

..Issuer: CNB Capital Trust I

....Outlook, Changed To Rating Under Review From Negative

..Issuer: Fifth Third Bancorp

....Outlook, Changed To Rating Under Review From Negative

..Issuer: Fifth Third Bank, Michigan

....Outlook, Changed To Rating Under Review From Negative

..Issuer: Fifth Third Bank, Ohio

....Outlook, Changed To Rating Under Review From Negative

..Issuer: Fifth Third Capital Trust II

....Outlook, Changed To Rating Under Review From Negative

..Issuer: Fifth Third Capital Trust IV

....Outlook, Changed To Rating Under Review From Negative

..Issuer: Fifth Third Capital Trust V

....Outlook, Changed To Rating Under Review From Negative

..Issuer: Fifth Third Capital Trust VI

....Outlook, Changed To Rating Under Review From Negative

..Issuer: Fifth Third Capital Trust VII

....Outlook, Changed To Rating Under Review From Negative

Fifth Third Bancorp, headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, reported assets of $120 billion at December 31, 2008.

New York
Robert Young
Managing Director
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

New York
Allen H. Tischler
VP - Senior Credit Officer
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

Moody's downgrades Fifth Third (senior to A2); ratings are on review
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