S&P Global Market Intelligence presents a weekly overview of ratings actions on Middle Eastern and African financial institutions and economies. Ratings actions are listed by announcement date in reverse chronological order.
* Fitch Ratings affirmed the B-/B long- and short-term issuer default ratings of Bank Audi SAL and Byblos Bank SAL. The outlook on the banks' long-term ratings is stable. The rating agency also affirmed the banks' "b-" viability ratings, 5 support ratings and CCC support rating floors.
* S&P Global Ratings took various rating actions on insurance and reinsurance companies exposed to the South African market, following its lowering of South Africa's long-term local-currency rating to BBB from BBB+.
* S&P downgraded Bahrain's long-term foreign- and local-currency sovereign credit ratings to BB- from BB. The long-term foreign-currency issuer credit ratings on the Central Bank of Bahrain were also downgraded to BB- from BB. The short-term foreign- and local-currency sovereign credit ratings were affirmed at B for both entities, and the outlooks on both were maintained at stable.
* Fitch affirmed Cote d'Ivoire's B+/B long- and short-term foreign- and local-currency issuer default ratings. The outlook on the long-term ratings is stable. Fitch also affirmed Cote d'Ivoire's country ceiling at BBB-.
* A.M. Best affirmed AXA unit AXA Mansard Insurance Plc's financial strength rating of B+ (Good) and its long-term issuer credit rating of "bbb-". The outlook of the credit ratings is positive.
* Capital Intelligence Ratings affirmed Tunisia-based Banque Internationale Arabe de Tunisie SA's ratings.
* S&P affirmed Barclays Africa Group Ltd.'s "zaA/zaA-2" long- and short-term South Africa national scale ratings and the "zaAA-/zaA-1" long- and short-term national scale ratings of core subsidiary Absa Bank Ltd.
* S&P affirmed the BB+/B long- and short-term counterparty credit ratings and "zaA/zaA-2" long- and short-term South Africa national scale ratings of FirstRand Ltd. The agency also affirmed the BBB-/A-3 long- and short-term counterparty credit ratings and "zaAA-/zaA-1" long- and short-term South Africa national scale ratings of FirstRand Bank Ltd.
* Moody's assigned Crédit du Maroc SA a national-scale local-currency deposit ratings of Aa1.ma/MA-1 and national-scale foreign-currency deposit ratings of Aa3.ma/MA-1. The Moroccan lender's Ba1/NP local-currency deposit ratings, "ba3" baseline credit assessment, "ba1" adjusted BCA and Ba2/NP foreign-currency deposit ratings were affirmed.
* Moody's assigned a foreign-currency short-term global scale issuer rating of Prime-2 and national scale issuer ratings of Aa1.za/P-1.za to Development Bank of Southern Africa.
* Moody's affirmed Banque Marocaine du Commerce Exterieur -SA's Ba1 long-term local-currency deposit rating and changed the outlook to negative from stable. At the same time, Moody's affirmed the bank's Not Prime short-term foreign- and local-currency bank deposit ratings and its Ba2 long-term foreign-currency deposit rating. The Moroccan lender's "ba3" baseline and adjusted baseline credit assessments, as well as its Ba1(cr)/Not Prime(cr) counterparty risk assessments, were affirmed. Simultaneously, Moody's assigned the lender Aa2.ma/MA-1 national scale local-currency deposit ratings and national scale foreign-currency deposit ratings of Aa3.ma/MA-1.
* Fitch affirmed the BBB- long-term issuer default ratings of Absa Bank, FirstRand Bank, Investec Bank Ltd., Nedbank Ltd. and Standard Bank of South Africa Ltd., and revised to negative from stable the outlook on the ratings. At the same time, the BBB- long-term issuer default ratings of the bank holding companies Barclays Africa Group, Standard Bank Group Ltd., Nedbank Group Ltd. and Investec Ltd. were affirmed and the outlooks revised to negative from stable. Fitch also affirmed the five banks' support ratings at 3 and the 5 support rating and No Floor support rating floor of Investec and Standard Bank Group.
* S&P suspended Skye Bank Plc's counterparty credit ratings due to a lack of sufficient, timely and reliable information from the bank for the agency to be able to maintain the ratings. At the time of suspension, the bank's global and local scale ratings were CCC-/C and ngCCC-/ngC and were on CreditWatch negative.
* Moody's assigned Ba3/Not-Prime long- and short-term foreign- and local-currency issuer ratings to Khaleeji Commercial Bank BSC. The outlook on the long-term ratings is negative. The agency also assigned the bank long- and short-term counterparty risk assessments of Ba2(cr)/Not-Prime(cr) and baseline and adjusted baseline credit assessments of "b1".
* Fitch affirmed RCS Investment Holdings Ltd.'s BBB/F2 long- and short-term foreign-currency issuer default ratings and revised the outlook on the long-term rating to negative from stable. Fitch also affirmed the bank's BBB long-term local-currency issuer default rating, AAA(zaf)/F1+(zaf) long- and short-term national ratings and 2 support rating. The outlook on the long-term ratings is stable. Simultaneously, the rating agency withdrew the bank's ratings for commercial reasons.
* Fitch affirmed Development Bank of Southern Africa's AA+(zaf)/F1+(zaf) national long- and short-term ratings and 2 support rating. The outlook on the long-term rating is stable.
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