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DBRS changes to positive trend on KBC Group, units

DBRS on March 13 confirmed KBC Group NV's A long-term issuer and senior debt ratings and unit KBC Bank NV's A (high) long-term issuer, deposits and senior debt ratings and changed the trend on the ratings to positive from stable.

The rating agency also confirmed KBC Bank's long-term critical obligations rating at AA and changed the trend on the rating to positive from stable.

KBC Group's short-term issuer and debt ratings were confirmed at R-1 (low). Also confirmed were KBC Bank's R-1 (middle) short-term issuer, debt and deposits ratings and R-1 (high) short-term critical obligations rating. The trend on all ratings is stable.

In addition, DBRS confirmed KBC Group unit Československá obchodná banka as' long-term issuer, deposits and senior debt ratings at A and its short-term issuer, debt and deposits ratings at R-1 (low) and changed the trend on the ratings to positive from stable.

DBRS said the trend change to positive reflects its view that KBC Group has significantly improved its risk profile while maintaining strong capital levels and solid funding and liquidity.

The group has also effectively managed its franchise to absorb challenging conditions in several business areas and maintain strong profitability, the agency noted.