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Announcement:

Moody's to assign backed-Aa1/Prime-1 ratings to debt securities covered by the Irish government's new guarantee

07 Jan 2010

London, 07 January 2010 -- Moody's Investors Service announced today that it will assign backed ratings of Aa1 to new long-term senior debt issuance of banks covered by the new Irish government guarantee and that is issued within the period up to September 29, 2010. The outlook on the backed-Aa1 long-term ratings will be negative, in line with the outlook on the Irish government's ratings. Moody's will also assign backed Prime-1 ratings to new short-term obligations of institutions whose short-term debt rating is below Prime-1. This will reflect that short-term obligations of these institutions, maturing within the guarantee period, are backed by a Prime-1 rated sovereign.

The backed ratings that will be assigned to guaranteed notes are based on the unconditional and irrevocable guarantee from the Irish government, rated Aa1/Prime-1, as laid out in the Credit Institutions (Eligible Liabilities Guarantee) Scheme 2009 (ELG).

The guarantee could be provided to debt instruments issued by eligible institutions, i.e. banks headquartered in Ireland (and certain subsidaries) that have been accepted as "Participating Institutions". Instruments covered by the guarantee are senior unsecured debt and commercial paper and certificates of deposit, up to a maximum maturity of five years. The scheme also allows for the guarantee of debt issuance programmes, such as those for the issuance of commercial paper and certificate of deposits. For those programmes that are guaranteed all debt issued under the programme will benefit from the guarantee.

Backed ratings will be assigned to specific securities and programmes once the "Guarantee Certificate" has been received and the rating agency noted that details of the guaranteed instruments and programmes will be published on the website of the National Treasury Management Agency (the entity that will run the scheme on behalf of the Irish government).

Moody's notes that the legal framework of the guarantee incorporates a mechanism for making a demand under the guarantee: this involves the completion of a "Notice of Demand" that is then lodged with the National Treasury Management Agency. The form of demand states that the beneficiary has to certify that the claimed sum has not been paid on the due date and that it has made a demand on the underlying issuer (who fails to honour it) before a demand can be made on the guarantor. Although this could, in theory, lead to a slight delay in the payment of any claim there are safeguards put in place that mitigates this risk. These include that a Participating Institution is required to inform the National Treasury Management Agency at least 5 days before the due date if it will be unable to comply with its payment obligations, that for short-term programmes the Guarantee Certificate will state that investors are not obliged to make written demands for their cash, and that the Minister may waive the requirement for a beneficiary to make a demand.

Given the government's clear intention to continue to restore confidence in the country's financial system, Moody's expects that the government would act in a manner consistent with this objective in the execution of the guarantee's provisions should a credit event occur with any of the guaranteed institutions and therefore expects that any such claims would be paid in a timely manner.

Dated subordinated debt and covered bonds that were covered under the 2008 Credit Institutions (Financial Support) scheme (CIFS) are not covered under the new scheme but existing issues will continue to be guaranteed until September 29, 2010.

London
Johannes Wassenberg
Managing Director
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

London
Ross Abercromby
Vice President - Senior Analyst
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Moody's to assign backed-Aa1/Prime-1 ratings to debt securities covered by the Irish government's new guarantee
No Related Data.
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