DBRS on Sept. 28 downgraded 'ssenior long-term debt and deposit rating to BB from BB(high) and its short-termdebt and deposit rating to R-4 from R-3.
The intrinsic assessment is now BB, with a stable trend onall ratings.
The downgrade of the long-term rating factors in challengesaround improving the bank's weak capital position amid the ongoing low interestrate environment, sluggish economic recovery in Portugal and a complexregulatory environment. The rating agency believes that the bank has littlefinancial flexibility to organically strengthen capital levels in the short tomedium term.
However, the BB senior rating continues to reflect thebank's strong, albeit relatively small, presence in Portugal, its largecustomer base and its relatively resilient fundamentals. At the same time, theratings continue to benefit from continued support from the bank's mainshareholder, Montepio Geral Associação Mutualista.