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Rating Action:

Moody's takes rating action on six Omani banks and one finance company

31 Jul 2017

Rating action follows downgrade and outlook change of the Omani government rating

Limassol, July 31, 2017 -- Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") has downgraded the long-term local and foreign currency deposit ratings of the six banks it rates in Oman: BankMuscat S.A.O.G. (to Baa2 from Baa1), HSBC Bank Oman SAOG (to Baa2 from Baa1), Bank Dhofar SAOG (to Baa3 from Baa2), National Bank of Oman Limited (SAOG) (to Baa3 from Baa2), Oman Arab Bank (SAOC) (to Baa3 from Baa2) and Bank Nizwa SAOG (to Ba1 from Baa3).

In addition, the rating agency has changed the outlook to negative from stable on the ratings of five banks and maintained the negative outlook on the ratings of one bank. At the same time, Moody's has affirmed the baseline credit assessments (BCAs) and adjusted BCAs of the six banks.

Moody's has also today affirmed the Ba3 corporate family rating and the B1 issuer rating of Al Omaniya Financial Services SAOG (Al Omaniya), and maintained its outlook negative.

This action follows Moody's downgrade of the Government of Oman's issuer rating to Baa2 from Baa1 and the change of its outlook to negative from stable on 28 July 2017. The sovereign action reflects Moody's view that progress towards addressing structural vulnerabilities to a weak oil price environment has been more limited than expected, reflecting institutional capacity constraints to address the country's large fiscal and external imbalances. Please see "Moody's downgrades Oman to Baa2, outlook negative"; https://www.moodys.com/research/Moodys-downgrades-Oman-to-Baa2-outlook-negative--PR_369982.

A full list of affected ratings is at the bottom of the press release.

RATINGS RATIONALE

-- BANKS' DEPOSIT RATINGS DOWNGRADES REFLECT REDUCED OMAN GOVERNMENT SUPPORT CAPACITY

The driver underpinning today's downgrade of six Omani banks' deposit ratings is the weakening fiscal capacity of the Government of Oman to provide support to banks, as signalled by the downgrade of its issuer rating to Baa2/negative from Baa1/stable.

The key driver for the Government of Oman's rating downgrade is that in Moody's view progress towards addressing structural vulnerabilities has been more limited than expected, reflecting institutional capacity constraints to address the large fiscal and external imbalances. Fiscal performance in 2016 and during the first months of 2017 has been weaker than the government's reform announcements and oil price developments would have suggested.

Therefore, while the government has started to implement fiscal consolidation measures, Moody's believes the challenges are significant and that the plan is unlikely to address structural issues -- the high dependence of Oman's government finances on oil revenues and government spending dominated by current spending. The oil price shock has also led to a sharp deterioration in Oman's external current account. Following years of surpluses, the current account balance turned into a sizable deficit of 15.5% of GDP in 2015 and widened further to 17.9% in 2016. Moody's projects current account deficits of 12% of GDP on average in 2017-18, as oil export revenues recover only slowly. For more information on the Sovereign action, please see "Moody's downgrades Oman to Baa2, outlook negative".

-- NEGATIVE OUTLOOK ALIGNED WITH NEGATIVE OULOOK ON THE SOVEREIGN RATING

Moody's decision to assign a negative outlook to the Omani banks' long-term deposit ratings reflects the potential further weakening in the Omani government's support capacity, as reflected by the negative outlook on the government's issuer rating, and the potential that Moody's could reassess its assumptions regarding the government's willingness to support the country's banks. In addition, the negative outlook also reflects the possibility that a weakening operating environment could put downward pressure on the banks' standalone creditworthiness. This could result from lower than expected economic growth, or weaker than expected credit and funding conditions, which would pressure banks' solvency and liquidity profiles. Real GDP growth, which Moody's expects to slow to 0.3% in 2017 in line with OPEC production cuts, was already down to 2.3% in 2016 from 4.2% in 2015, owing to lower hydrocarbon production growth combined with government spending cuts.

The negative outlook on Al Omaniya's ratings continues to reflect the potential negative impact from tighter liquidity conditions and softer economic growth on the company's liquidity and solvency profile.

-- BANKS' BASELINE CREDIT ASSESSMENT (BCA) AFFIRMATION

Moody's decision to affirm the BCAs of the six banks reflects the resilience in their financial performance, underpinned by continued solid asset quality, healthy capital buffers and relatively low market funding reliance.

Despite the possible challenges resulting from a weaker operating environment, we expect the creditworthiness of Omani bans to remain resilient. The banks exhibit a solid solvency profile, with system level problem loans to gross loans ratio of 2.1% as of March 2017 and system level tangible common equity to RWAs ratio of 13.2%. In addition, system level market funds to tangible banking assets ratio was modest at 10%, and liquid resources were sound at 22.1% of tangible banking assets.

Further bank specific detail is given below.

-- BANK-BY-BANK SUMMARY OF ACTIONS

- BankMuscat S.A.O.G. (BankMuscat)

Moody's downgraded BankMuscat's long-term deposit rating to Baa2 from Baa1, and affirmed its BCA and adjusted BCA at baa2. At the same time, the rating agency changed the outlook on the bank's long-term deposit ratings to negative from stable.

The downgrade of the long-term deposit ratings reflects the Omani government's weakened capacity to provide support as detailed above.

Following the downgrade, the bank's BCA is now at the same level as the sovereign rating. As a result there is no longer any support uplift for the bank's deposit rating. The negative outlook on BankMuscat's long-term deposit ratings reflects the potential future reduction in Omani government creditworthiness, as indicated by the negative outlook on the sovereign rating, as well as the weakening domestic operating environment, which could lead to a weakening of the bank's standalone financial fundamentals. This could result from lower than expected economic growth, as well as weaker than expected credit and/or funding conditions.

The affirmation of the bank's baa2 BCA, despite the vulnerability of the country's finances and external accounts to oil price swings, reflects the bank's solid asset quality, sound capital (15.2% tangible common equity to RWAs ratio at March 2017) and modest market funding reliance as well as its healthy profitability underpinned by a dominant domestic franchise (over 35% domestic assets market share). However, declining liquid resources reduce the bank's buffers in a tighter funding environment.

- HSBC Bank Oman SAOG (HBON)

Moody's downgraded HBON's long-term deposit rating to Baa2 from Baa1, and affirmed its BCA at ba1 and its adjusted BCA at baa2. At the same time, the rating agency has changed the outlook on the bank's long-term deposit ratings to negative from stable.

The downgrade of the long-term deposit ratings reflects the Omani government's weakened capacity to provide support as detailed above.

Following the sovereign downgrade, the sovereign rating is now at the same level as the bank's adjusted BCA. As a result there is no longer any support uplift for the bank's deposit rating. The negative outlook on HBON's long-term deposit ratings reflects the potential future reduction in Omani government creditworthiness, reflected in the negative outlook on the sovereign rating, as well as the potential weakening in the domestic operating environment, which could lead to a weakening of the bank's standalone financial fundamentals. This could result from lower than expected economic growth, as well as weaker than expected credit and/or funding conditions.

The affirmation of the baa2 adjusted BCA reflects Moody's continued assumption of a 'high' probability of parental support for HBON from its ultimate parent HSBC Holdings Plc (A1 long-term senior unsecured debt rating, outlook negative) in case of need. This assessment translates in a two-notch uplift from the bank's ba1 BCA, reflecting HBON's strategic fit within the HSBC group, which has management control and brand name association with the group.

The affirmation of the ba1 BCA, despite the vulnerability of the country's finances and external accounts to oil price swings, reflects the bank's solid asset quality, sound loss absorption buffers and strong solid liquidity buffers (43.7% liquid banking assets to tangible banking assets ratio at March 2017). These strengths are moderated by high asset concentrations and relatively low profitability.

- Bank Dhofar SAOG (Bank Dhofar)

Moody's downgraded Bank Dhofar's long-term deposit rating to Baa3 from Baa2, and affirmed its BCA and adjusted BCA at ba1. At the same time, the rating agency has maintained the outlook on the bank's long-term deposit ratings at negative.

The downgrade of the long-term deposit ratings reflects the Omani government's weakened capacity to provide support as detailed above.

The negative outlook on Bank Dhofar's long-term deposit ratings reflects the potential reduction in Omani government support capacity and/or support willingness, reflected in the negative outlook on the sovereign rating, as well as the potential weakening in the domestic operating environment, which could lead to a weakening of the bank's standalone financial fundamentals. This could result from lower than expected economic growth, as well as weaker than expected credit and/or funding conditions.

In addition, the negative outlook on Bank Dhofar's ratings continues to reflect potential pressures from modest capitalisation and rapid credit growth over recent years. The bank reported a 10.2% tangible common equity to RWAs ratio at end-2016 which is lower than the 13.2% system average. The bank's rapid loan growth over the recent years (21% growth in 2015 vs 12% system average) limits the seasoning of the book and poses challenges for the operational and underwriting controls. However, the bank's growth has slowed down to 10% in 2016 (in line with the local average).

The affirmation of the ba1 BCA, despite the vulnerability of the country's finances and external accounts to oil price swings, reflects the bank's solid profit generation, modest market funding reliance (6.4% market funds to tangible banking assets ratio at March 2017) and sound liquidity buffers reflecting access to large government related deposits. However, the bank's construction sector exposure, rapid loan growth over recent years and modest capitalisation (9.8% tangible common equity to RWAs ratio at March 2017) moderate these strengths.

- National Bank of Oman Limited (SAOG) (NBO)

Moody's downgraded NBO's long-term deposit ratings to Baa3 from Baa2, and affirmed its BCA and adjusted BCA at ba1. At the same time, the rating agency has changed the outlook on the bank's long-term deposit ratings to negative from stable.

The downgrade of the long-term deposit ratings reflects the Omani government's weakened capacity to provide support as detailed above.

The negative outlook on NBO's long-term deposit rating reflects the potential reduction in Oman government support capacity and/or support willingness, reflected in the negative outlook on the sovereign rating, as well as the potential weakening in the domestic operating environment, which could lead to a weakening of the bank's standalone financial fundamentals. This could result from lower than expected economic growth, as well as weaker than expected credit and/or funding conditions.

The affirmation of the ba1 BCA, despite the vulnerability of the country's finances and external accounts to oil price swings, reflects the bank's solid asset quality, sound capital buffers (12.9% tangible common equity to RWAs ratio at end-2016 and 135% loan loss reserves to problem loans as of March 2017) and healthy profitability underpinned by a well-established domestic franchise and operations in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). However, the bank exhibits modest liquid resources.

- Oman Arab Bank (SAOC) (OAB)

Moody's downgraded OAB's long-term deposit ratings to Baa3 from Baa2, and affirmed its BCA and adjusted BCA at ba1. At the same time, the rating agency has changed the outlook on the bank's long-term deposit ratings to negative from stable.

The downgrade of the long-term deposit ratings reflects the Omani government's weakened capacity to provide support as detailed above.

The negative outlook on OAB's long-term deposit rating reflects the potential reduction in Omani government support capacity and/or support willingness, reflected in the negative outlook on the sovereign rating, as well as the potential weakening in the domestic operating environment, which could lead to a weakening of the bank's standalone financial fundamentals. This could result from lower than expected economic growth, as well as weaker than expected credit and/or funding conditions.

The affirmation of the ba1 BCA, despite the vulnerability of the country's finances and external accounts to oil price swings, reflects the bank's sound asset quality which benefits from its conservative approach and close association with Arab Bank, its sound capitalisation (12.6% tangible common equity to RWAs as of March 2017), as well as its low market funding reliance and adequate liquid resources. However, the BCA also captures the challenged profit generation.

- Bank Nizwa SAOG (Bank Nizwa)

Moody's downgraded Bank Nizwa's long-term deposit rating to Ba1 from Baa3, and affirmed its BCA and adjusted BCA at b1. At the same time, the rating agency has changed the outlook on the bank's long-term deposit ratings to negative from stable.

The downgrade of the long-term deposit ratings reflects the Omani government's weakened capacity to provide support as detailed above.

The negative outlook on Bank Nizwa's long-term deposit rating reflects the potential reduction in Omani government support capacity and/or support willingness, reflected in the negative outlook on the sovereign rating, as well as the potential weakening in the domestic operating environment, which could lead to a weakening of the bank's standalone financial fundamentals. This could result from lower than expected economic growth, as well as weaker than expected credit and/or funding conditions.

The affirmation of the b1 BCA, despite the vulnerability of the country's finances and external accounts to oil price swings, reflects the bank's high capital buffers (20.8% tangible common equity to RWAs ratio), moderated by rapid growth in recent years, low profitability reflecting a developing franchise, concentrated funding profile, limited liquid resources and its evolving risk management framework.

-- AFFIRMATION OF AL OMANIYA'S RATINGS; OUTLOOK REMAINS NEGATIVE

The affirmation of Al Omaniya's B1 issuer rating reflects its solid franchise in asset and working capital loans to corporates that supports its profitability, combined with a strong asset quality and high capitalisation (21.2% tangible common equity standing to tangible managed assets ratio as of March 2017). However, the company's relatively weak funding and liquidity moderate these strengths.

The affirmation of the firm's Ba3 CFR reflects an unchanged one-notch uplift based on Moody's assessment of a high probability of affiliate support from BankMuscat in case of need, reflecting the longstanding strong financial and operational ties between the two companies, with BankMuscat being Al Omaniya's primary lender.

The company's negative outlook continues to reflect the potential impact from tighter liquidity conditions and softer economic growth on the company's credit profile, given the firm's reliance on secured confidence sensitive wholesale funding.

WHAT COULD CHANGE THE RATINGS -- UP

Upwards pressure on the banks' ratings is limited given the negative outlook on their ratings. A stabilisation in the Omani government's issuer rating outlook could lead to a stabilisation in the banks' rating outlooks.

In addition, for Bank Dhofar, continued resilience of asset quality metrics as the loan book seasons combined with a material improvement in capitalisation buffers could lead to a stabilisation of the ratings.

In addition for Al Omaniya, continued resilience of the liquidity and funding metrics amidst the current tightening environment could also lead to a stabilisation of the ratings.

WHAT COULD CHANGE THE RATINGS -- DOWN

Downward pressure on Omani banks' ratings could develop through: (1) a further weakening of the Omani government's capacity to provide support, as a downgrade of Omani government's issuer rating would imply, and/or (2) Moody's reassessment of the willingness of the government to provide support, which could result from a downgrade of the Omani government's issuer rating, and/or (3) a weakening of the domestic operating environment, as a lower Macro Profile would imply.

Downward pressure on Al Omaniya's ratings could develop through a combination of: (1) a significant deterioration in the firm's funding and liquidity metrics and/or (2) a material weakening in the company's solvency metrics.

LIST OF AFFECTED RATINGS

Issuer: Bank Dhofar SAOG

Downgrades:

....LT Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Downgraded to Baa3 from Baa2, Outlook Remains Negative

....ST Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Downgraded to P-3 from P-2

....Senior Unsecured MTN Program, Downgraded to (P)Baa3 from (P)Baa2

....LT Counterparty Risk Assessment, Downgraded to Baa2(cr) from Baa1(cr)

Affirmations:

....Adjusted Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed ba1

....Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed ba1

....ST Counterparty Risk Assessment, Affirmed P-2(cr)

Outlook Actions:

....Outlook, Remains Negative

Issuer: Bank Nizwa SAOG

Downgrades:

....LT Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Downgraded to Ba1 from Baa3, Outlook Changed To Negative From Stable

....ST Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Downgraded to NP from P-3

....LT Counterparty Risk Assessment, Downgraded to Baa3(cr) from Baa2(cr)

....ST Counterparty Risk Assessment, Downgraded to P-3(cr) from P-2(cr)

Affirmations:

.... Adjusted Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed b1

.... Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed b1

Outlook Actions:

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

Issuer: BankMuscat S.A.O.G.

Downgrades:

....LT Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Downgraded to Baa2 from Baa1, Outlook Changed To Negative From Stable

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, Downgraded to Baa2 from Baa1, Outlook Changed To Negative From Stable

....Senior Unsecured MTN Program, Downgraded to (P)Baa2 from (P)Baa1

....Subordinate MTN Program, Downgraded to (P)Baa3 from (P)Baa2

....LT Counterparty Risk Assessment, Downgraded to Baa2(cr) from Baa1(cr)

Affirmations:

....ST Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Affirmed P-2

....Adjusted Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed baa2

....Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed baa2

....ST Counterparty Risk Assessment, Affirmed P-2(cr)

Outlook Actions:

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

Issuer: HSBC Bank Oman SAOG

Downgrades:

....LT Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Downgraded to Baa2 from Baa1, Outlook Changed To Negative From Stable

....LT Counterparty Risk Assessment, Downgraded to Baa2(cr) from Baa1(cr)

Affirmations:

....ST Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Affirmed P-2

....Adjusted Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed baa2

....Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed ba1

....ST Counterparty Risk Assessment, Affirmed P-2(cr)

Outlook Actions:

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

Issuer: National Bank of Oman Limited (SAOG)

Downgrades:

....LT Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Downgraded to Baa3 from Baa2, Outlook Changed To Negative From Stable

....ST Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Downgraded to P-3 from P-2

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, Downgraded to Baa3 from Baa2, Outlook Changed To Negative From Stable

....Senior Unsecured MTN Program, Downgraded to (P)Baa3 from (P)Baa2

....LT Counterparty Risk Assessment, Downgraded to Baa2(cr) from Baa1(cr)

Affirmations:

....Adjusted Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed ba1

....Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed ba1

....ST Counterparty Risk Assessment, Affirmed P-2(cr)

Outlook Actions:

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

Issuer: Oman Arab Bank (SAOC)

....LT Bank Deposits (Local & Foreign Currency), Downgraded to Baa3 from Baa2, Outlook Changed To Negative From Stable

....ST Bank Deposits Rating (Local & Foreign Currency), Downgraded to P-3 from P-2

....LT Counterparty Risk Assessment, Downgraded to Baa2(cr) from Baa1(cr)

Affirmations:

....Adjusted Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed ba1

....Baseline Credit Assessment, Affirmed ba1

....ST Counterparty Risk Assessment, Affirmed P-2(cr)

Outlook Actions:

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

Issuer: Al Omaniya Financial Services SAOG

Affirmations:

....LT Issuer Rating (Local & Foreign Currency), Affirmed B1, Outlook Remains Negative

....LT Corporate Family Rating, Affirmed Ba3, Outlook Remains Negative

Outlook Actions:

....Outlook, Remains Negative

PRINCIPAL METHODOLOGIES

The principal methodology used in rating Al Omaniya Financial Services SAOG was Finance Companies published in December 2016. Please see the Rating Methodologies page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.

The principal methodology used in rating Bank Nizwa SAOG, Bank Dhofar SAOG, BankMuscat S.A.O.G., HSBC Bank Oman SAOG, National Bank of Oman Limited (SAOG) and Oman Arab Bank (SAOC) was Banks published in January 2016. Please see the Rating Methodologies page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.

The Local Market analyst for Al Omaniya Financial Services SAOG, Bank Nizwa SAOG, Bank Dhofar SAOG, BankMuscat S.A.O.G., National Bank of Oman Limited (SAOG) and Oman Arab Bank (SAOC) ratings is Mik Kabeya, +971.4.237.9590.

The Local Market analyst for HSBC Bank Oman SAOG ratings is Olivier Panis, +971.4.237.9533.

REGULATORY DISCLOSURES

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 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.

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.

Christos Theofilou, CFA
Asst Vice President - Analyst
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service Cyprus Ltd.
Porto Bello Building
1, Siafi Street, 3042 Limassol
PO Box 53205
Limassol CY 3301
Cyprus
JOURNALISTS: 852 3758 1350
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

Sean Marion
MD - Financial Institutions
Financial Institutions Group
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

Releasing Office:
Moody's Investors Service Cyprus Ltd.
Porto Bello Building
1, Siafi Street, 3042 Limassol
PO Box 53205
Limassol CY 3301
Cyprus
JOURNALISTS: 852 3758 1350
Client Service: 44 20 7772 5454

No Related Data.
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To the extent permitted by law, MOODY'S and its directors, officers, employees, agents, representatives, licensors and suppliers disclaim liability to any person or entity for any indirect, special, consequential, or incidental losses or damages whatsoever arising from or in connection with the information contained herein or the use of or inability to use any such information, even if MOODY'S or any of its directors, officers, employees, agents, representatives, licensors or suppliers is advised in advance of the possibility of such losses or damages, including but not limited to: (a) any loss of present or prospective profits or (b) any loss or damage arising where the relevant financial instrument is not the subject of a particular credit rating assigned by MOODY'S.

To the extent permitted by law, MOODY'S and its directors, officers, employees, agents, representatives, licensors and suppliers disclaim liability for any direct or compensatory losses or damages caused to any person or entity, including but not limited to by any negligence (but excluding fraud, willful misconduct or any other type of liability that, for the avoidance of doubt, by law cannot be excluded) on the part of, or any contingency within or beyond the control of, MOODY'S or any of its directors, officers, employees, agents, representatives, licensors or suppliers, arising from or in connection with the information contained herein or the use of or inability to use any such information.

NO WARRANTY, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, AS TO THE ACCURACY, TIMELINESS, COMPLETENESS, MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR ANY PARTICULAR PURPOSE OF ANY CREDIT RATING, ASSESSMENT, OTHER OPINION OR INFORMATION IS GIVEN OR MADE BY MOODY'S IN ANY FORM OR MANNER WHATSOEVER.

Moody's Investors Service, Inc., a wholly-owned credit rating agency subsidiary of Moody's Corporation ("MCO"), hereby discloses that most issuers of debt securities (including corporate and municipal bonds, debentures, notes and commercial paper) and preferred stock rated by Moody's Investors Service, Inc. have, prior to assignment of any credit rating, agreed to pay to Moody's Investors Service, Inc. for credit ratings opinions and services rendered by it fees ranging from $1,000 to approximately $2,700,000. MCO and Moody's investors Service also maintain policies and procedures to address the independence of Moody's Investors Service credit ratings and credit rating processes. Information regarding certain affiliations that may exist between directors of MCO and rated entities, and between entities who hold credit ratings from Moody's Investors Service and have also publicly reported to the SEC an ownership interest in MCO of more than 5%, is posted annually at www.moodys.com under the heading "Investor Relations — Corporate Governance — Director and Shareholder Affiliation Policy."

Additional terms for Australia only: Any publication into Australia of this document is pursuant to the Australian Financial Services License of MOODY'S affiliate, Moody's Investors Service Pty Limited ABN 61 003 399 657AFSL 336969 and/or Moody's Analytics Australia Pty Ltd ABN 94 105 136 972 AFSL 383569 (as applicable). This document is intended to be provided only to "wholesale clients" within the meaning of section 761G of the Corporations Act 2001. By continuing to access this document from within Australia, you represent to MOODY'S that you are, or are accessing the document as a representative of, a "wholesale client" and that neither you nor the entity you represent will directly or indirectly disseminate this document or its contents to "retail clients" within the meaning of section 761G of the Corporations Act 2001. MOODY'S credit rating is an opinion as to the creditworthiness of a debt obligation of the issuer, not on the equity securities of the issuer or any form of security that is available to retail investors.

Additional terms for Japan only: Moody's Japan K.K. ("MJKK") is a wholly-owned credit rating agency subsidiary of Moody's Group Japan G.K., which is wholly-owned by Moody's Overseas Holdings Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of MCO. Moody's SF Japan K.K. ("MSFJ") is a wholly-owned credit rating agency subsidiary of MJKK. MSFJ is not a Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organization ("NRSRO"). Therefore, credit ratings assigned by MSFJ are Non-NRSRO Credit Ratings. Non-NRSRO Credit Ratings are assigned by an entity that is not a NRSRO and, consequently, the rated obligation will not qualify for certain types of treatment under U.S. laws. MJKK and MSFJ are credit rating agencies registered with the Japan Financial Services Agency and their registration numbers are FSA Commissioner (Ratings) No. 2 and 3 respectively.

MJKK or MSFJ (as applicable) hereby disclose that most issuers of debt securities (including corporate and municipal bonds, debentures, notes and commercial paper) and preferred stock rated by MJKK or MSFJ (as applicable) have, prior to assignment of any credit rating, agreed to pay to MJKK or MSFJ (as applicable) for credit ratings opinions and services rendered by it fees ranging from JPY125,000 to approximately JPY250,000,000.

MJKK and MSFJ also maintain policies and procedures to address Japanese regulatory requirements.

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