Ratings roundup: FirstBank, Banco de Crédito, GPAT bonds

- Monday, July 11, 2011

Ratings roundup: FirstBank, Banco de Crédito, GPAT bonds

Standard & Poor's (S&P) has placed its CCC+ counterparty credit rating on FirstBank Puerto Rico on creditwatch with positive implications following the recent announcement by its parent company, First BanCorp (NYSE: FBP), that it entered into agreements with various investors that will purchase US$515mn of its common stock.

The US Treasury agreed to convert its US$424mn of TARP-related preferred stock to common shares if the bank raises at least US$350mn in common equity. This conversion will take place if FirstBank executes the purchase agreements with private investors, S&P said in a report.

"We expect that the execution of the purchase and conversion agreements will boost FirstBank's capital sufficiently for us to upgrade the bank by at least one notch," credit analyst Kevin Cole wrote.

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To read the full report, go to this link

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Fitch has affirmed Banco de Crédito del Perú's (BCP ) long and short-term foreign currency issuer default ratings (IDR) at BBB and F2, respectively, as well as the Peruvian bank's long and short-term local currency IDRs at BBB and F2.

BCP's ratings reflect its dominant franchise, large market share, sound performance through the crisis, diversified balance sheet and revenue stream, broad and low-cost deposit base, and sound asset quality, as well as its adequate reserves and capital.

The ratings also reflect BCP's systemic importance, as well as room for progress in its efficiency levels, the agency said in a report.

BCP is Peru's largest bank, with a 37% market share in assets. It is the main asset of Credicorp (NYSE: BAP), the country's biggest financial services company.

To read the full report, go to this link

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S&P has assigned an A-1+ national scale rating to an up to 50mn-peso (US$12.2mn) third bond issuance by Argentine finance company GPAT Compañía Financiera.

The rating reflects support from its shareholder, local bank Banco Patagonia, and its good positioning in the car financing market, as well as adequate capitalization and good asset quality levels, the agency said in a report.

To read the full report, in Spanish, go to this link