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Rating Action:

Moody's: weak CRE outlook hurts some U.S. bank ratings

28 Feb 2008
Moody's: weak CRE outlook hurts some U.S. bank ratings

New York, February 28, 2008 -- Moody's Investors Service has taken negative rating actions on a number of U.S. banks -- primarily regional and community banks -- prompted by concerns about their exposures to commercial real estate (CRE). A complete list of rating actions can be found later in this press release.

The following holding companies and/or their subsidiaries were downgraded:

Independent Bank Corporation

RBC Centura Banks (BFSR only)

Regions Financial Corporation

Susquehanna Bancshares (short-term bank rating only)

Synovus Financial Corporation

Trustmark Corporation

Western Alliance Bancorporation

Zions Bancorporation

The following holding company and its subsidiaries were placed under review for possible downgrade:

Fulton Financial Corporation

The following holding company and its subsidiaries' ratings were affirmed, but the outlook was changed to negative from stable:

Associated Banc-Corp

Moody's said that the negative rating actions were based on the potential loss content in the affected banks' CRE portfolios. The key rating considerations were the expected loss relative to each bank's regulatory capital surplus and each bank's ability to generate capital through core earnings and other capital growth initiatives. Moody's also evaluated each bank's other risk concentrations, such as residential mortgage exposure, as well as its liquidity profile and franchise value. "At the end of the day, the sizable CRE exposures drove the rating decisions," said Moody's Analyst, Joseph Pucella.

Moody's employed a refined stress test to estimate expected losses, to guide analysis of the banks' positions and vulnerabilities, and to generally inform its rating decisions. This stress test is based on output from Moody's Commercial Mortgage Metrics (CMM), which analyzes the underlying credit risk of CRE loans. Among other variables, CMM incorporates information on the local property market, the property type, loan structures and terms, and capital market trends. The U.S. banking team also considered in its stress test the loss potential stemming from land and residential construction exposures that are excluded from CMM.

In a special comment published today, Moody's outlined the details of the CRE stress test. According to Mr. Pucella, a co-developer of the test, this tool derives "an expected loss for a bank's CRE loan portfolio in both a base case and a severe stress scenario."

Mr. Pucella explained that an individual bank's ratings determine the precise stress level to be applied. "Higher-rated banks' portfolios are stressed more than lower-rated ones because we expect higher-rated banks to be able to withstand greater pressures," the analyst stated.

Additionally, the bank subsidiary of the following holding company had its ratings affirmed and its outlook returned to stable from negative following the application of the CRE stress test outlined above:

Integra Bank Corporation

Rating actions announced today by Moody's were:

Downgrades:

..Issuer: AmSouth Bancorporation

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

..Issuer: AmSouth Bank

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

..Issuer: Amegy Bank National Association

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

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

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

..Issuer: Amegy Corporation

....Issuer Rating, Downgraded to A3 from A2

..Issuer: Bank of Nevada

....Issuer Rating, Downgraded to Baa2 from Baa1

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to Baa2 from Baa1

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to Baa2 from Baa1

..Issuer: California Bank & Trust

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

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

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

..Issuer: Columbus Bank & Trust Company

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

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

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

..Issuer: First Commercial Bank

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

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

..Issuer: Independent Bank

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

....Issuer Rating, Downgraded to Baa1 from A3

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to Baa1 from A3

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to Baa1 from A3

..Issuer: Nevada State Bank

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

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

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

..Issuer: RBC Centura Bank

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

..Issuer: Regions Asset Management Company, Inc.

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

..Issuer: Regions Bank

....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 Rating, Downgraded to A1 from Aa3

..Issuer: Regions Financial Corporation

....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

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

....Subordinate Shelf, Downgraded to (P)A3 from (P)A2

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

..Issuer: Regions Financing Trust II

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

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

..Issuer: Susquehanna Bank PA

....OSO Rating, Downgraded to P-2 from P-1

....Deposit Rating, Downgraded to P-2 from P-1

..Issuer: Synovus Financial Corp.

....Subordinate Regular Bond/Debenture, Downgraded to Baa1 from A3

..Issuer: Trustmark Corporation

....Issuer Rating, Downgraded to A3 from A2

..Issuer: Trustmark National Bank

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

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

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

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

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

..Issuer: Union Planters Bank, National Association

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

..Issuer: Union Planters Capital Trust A

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

..Issuer: Union Planters Corporation

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

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

..Issuer: Union Planters Preferred Funding Corp.

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

..Issuer: Western Alliance Bancorporation

....Issuer Rating, Downgraded to Baa3 from Baa2

..Issuer: Zions Bancorporation

....Multiple Seniority Shelf, Downgraded to a range of (P)Baa2 to (P)A3 from a range of (P)Baa1 to (P)A2

....Preferred Stock Preferred Stock, Downgraded to Baa2 from Baa1

....Subordinate Regular Bond/Debenture, Downgraded to Baa1 from A3

....Senior Unsecured Commercial Paper, Downgraded to P-2 from P-1

....Senior Unsecured Regular Bond/Debenture, Downgraded to A3 from A2

..Issuer: Zions Capital Trust B

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

..Issuer: Zions Capital Trust C

....Preferred Stock Shelf, Downgraded to (P)Baa1 from (P)A3

..Issuer: Zions Capital Trust D

....Preferred Stock Shelf, Downgraded to (P)Baa1 from (P)A3

..Issuer: Zions First National Bank

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

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

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Downgraded to A2 from A1

..Issuer: Zions Institutional Capital Trust A

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

On Review for Possible Downgrade:

..Issuer: Fulton Bank

....Bank Financial Strength Rating, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently B-

....Issuer Rating, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently A1

....OSO Senior Unsecured OSO Rating, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently A1

....Senior Unsecured Deposit Rating, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently A1

..Issuer: Fulton Capital Trust I

....Preferred Stock Preferred Stock, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently A3

....Preferred Stock Shelf, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently (P)A3

..Issuer: Fulton Capital Trust II

....Preferred Stock Shelf, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently (P)A3

..Issuer: Fulton Capital Trust III

....Preferred Stock Shelf, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently (P)A3

..Issuer: Fulton Capital Trust IV

....Preferred Stock Shelf, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently (P)A3

..Issuer: Fulton Financial Corporation

....Issuer Rating, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently A2

....Multiple Seniority Shelf, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently (P)Baa1

....Subordinate Regular Bond/Debenture, Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade, currently A3

Outlook Actions:

..Issuer: ASBC Capital I

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

..Issuer: ASBC Capital II

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

..Issuer: ASBC Capital III

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

..Issuer: Amegy Bank National Association

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

..Issuer: Amegy Corporation

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

..Issuer: Associated Banc-Corp

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

..Issuer: Associated Bank, N.A.

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

..Issuer: Bank of Nevada

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

..Issuer: California Bank & Trust

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

..Issuer: Columbus Bank & Trust Company

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

..Issuer: First Commercial Bank

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

..Issuer: Fulton Bank

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

..Issuer: Fulton Capital Trust I

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

..Issuer: Fulton Capital Trust II

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

..Issuer: Fulton Capital Trust III

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

..Issuer: Fulton Capital Trust IV

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

..Issuer: Fulton Financial Corporation

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

..Issuer: Independent Bank

....Outlook, Changed To Stable From Negative

..Issuer: Integra Bank National Association

....Outlook, Changed To Stable From Negative

..Issuer: Nevada State Bank

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

..Issuer: Susquehanna Bancshares, Inc.

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

..Issuer: Susquehanna Bank PA

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

..Issuer: Synovus Financial Corp.

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

..Issuer: Western Alliance Bancorporation

....Outlook, Changed To Negative From Stable

..Issuer: Zions Bancorporation

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

..Issuer: Zions Capital Trust B

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

..Issuer: Zions Capital Trust C

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

..Issuer: Zions Capital Trust D

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

..Issuer: Zions First National Bank

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

..Issuer: Zions Institutional Capital Trust A

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

Prior to today's announcement, Moody's had taken rating actions on a number of banks in which CRE risk was a major rating driver. These are listed below.

- Colonial BancGroup, Inc. (The): Downgraded the ratings of Colonial Bank - bank financial strength to C- from C and long-term bank deposits to Baa1 from A3 and placed a negative outlook on all entities on January 11, 2008

- First Horizon National Corporation: Downgraded the long-term, senior unsecured ratings to Baa1 from A3; downgraded the ratings of its lead bank, First Tennessee Bank - bank financial strength to C from C+, long term deposits to A3 from A2 and short term deposits to Prime-2 from Prime-1 on January 24, 2008; outlook remains negative

- Flagstar Bancorp, Inc.: Downgraded the ratings of lead bank, Flagstar Bank, FSB - bank financial strength rating to D+ from C-, long-term deposits to Baa3 from Baa2, short-term deposits to Prime-3 from Prime-2, and placed a negative outlook on all ratings on January 30, 2008

- Marshall & Ilsley Corporation (M&I LLC): Changed rating outlook to negative from stable on January 25, 2008

- National City Corporation: Placed ratings on review for possible downgrade on January 8, 2008

- Sovereign Bancorp, Inc.: Placed ratings on review for possible downgrade on January 16, 2008

- South Financial Group, Inc. (The): Downgraded the ratings of lead bank, Carolina First Bank - bank financial strength to C- from C and long term deposits to Baa1 from A3 and placed a negative outlook on all ratings on January 28, 2008

Moody's said that updated credit opinions on the banks affected by today's actions will be published by February 29, 2008.

Additionally, Moody's said that it will host a teleconference for subscribers on Monday, March 3, 2008 to discuss its CRE analysis. Event details are available at: http://www.moodys.com/cust/event/eventdetail.aspx?id=4400000000922&mod=3.

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

New York
Joseph Pucella
Analyst
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

No Related Data.
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