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MEA ratings roundup through March 19

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MEA ratings roundup through March 19

S&P Global Market Intelligence presents a weekly overview of ratings actions on Middle Eastern and African financial institutions. Ratings actions are listed by announcement date in reverse chronological order.

March 19

* Moody's took ratings actions on eight Oman-based financial institutions, downgrading the long- and short-term deposit ratings of Bank Muscat SAOG and HSBC Holdings PLC unit HSBC Bank Oman SAOG to Baa3/P-3 from Baa2/P-2 and those of Bank Sohar SAOG and Oman International Development & Investment Co. SAOG unit Oman Arab Bank SAOC to Ba1/NP from Baa3/P-3. The baseline and adjusted baseline credit assessments of Bank Dhofar SAOG and National Bank of Oman SAOG were downgraded to "ba2" from "ba1" while Bank Nizwa SAOG's long-term deposit ratings were lowered to Ba2 from Ba1. Al Omaniya Financial Services's long-term corporate family ratings and long-term issuer ratings were affirmed at Ba3 and B1, respectively.

* S&P Global Ratings downgraded Kuwait-based Wethaq Takaful Insurance Co. KSCP's long-term local-currency counterparty credit and financial strength ratings to B+ from BB, and placed the ratings on CreditWatch with negative implications.

March 16

* Moody's lowered Oman's long-term issuer and senior unsecured bond ratings to Baa3 from Baa2 and maintained the outlook at negative.

* S&P affirmed Nigeria's B/B long- and short-term local- and foreign-currency sovereign credit ratings, with a stable outlook. The rating agency also affirmed the country's long- and short-term Nigeria national scale ratings at ngBBB/ngA-2.

* Moody's downgraded the long-term foreign-currency deposit ratings of Banque Internationale Arabe de Tunisie SA, Arab Bank Group unit Arab Tunisian Bank, Banque de Tunisie SA, Société Tunisienne de Banque and Amen Bank to B3 from B2, among other actions on the five Tunisian banks. The agency also downgraded the long-term local-currency deposit ratings of Arab Tunisian Bank, Banque de Tunisie and Banque Internationale Arabe de Tunisie to B2 from B1, affirmed Amen Bank's long-term local-currency deposit rating at B2 and revised the outlooks on all five banks' long-term deposit ratings to stable from negative.

March 15

* Fitch Ratings downgraded National Bank of Bahrain BSC's and BBK BSC's long-term issuer default ratings to BB- from BB+ and Ahli United Bank BSC's long- and short-term issuer default and senior unsecured debt ratings to BBB-/F3 from BBB+/F2 and revised the outlooks on National Bank of Bahrain and Ahli United Bank to stable from negative, among other ratings actions on the three Bahraini lenders.

March 14

* S&P revised the outlook on pan-African insurer African Trade Insurance Agency's long-term foreign-currency issuer credit and local-currency financial strength ratings to stable from negative, and affirmed the ratings at A.

* Moody's lowered Tunisia's long-term issuer rating to B2 from B1 and changed the outlook to stable from negative. The rating agency also downgraded the Central Bank of Tunisia's foreign-currency senior unsecured debt rating to B2 from B1 and changed the outlook to stable from negative.

* Capital Intelligence Ratings revised the outlook on Banque du Caire SAE, QNB Alahli SAE, National Bank of Egypt (SAE), Export Development Bank of Egypt (SAE), Commercial International Bank (Egypt) SAE, Bank of Alexandria SAE, Arab African International Bank (Egyptian JSC) and Arab International Bank's long-term foreign-currency ratings to positive from stable.

March 13

* CI Ratings assigned Sudan-based United Capital Bank first-time long- and short-term foreign-currency ratings of C+/C, a financial strength rating of B, a national long-term rating of suBBB- and a short-term rating of suA3. All ratings carry a negative outlook.

* Moody's affirmed Lebanon-based Bank Audi SAL's B3/NP long- and short-term local- and foreign-currency bank deposit ratings, long- and short-term national scale bank deposit ratings, "b3" baseline and adjusted baseline credit assessments and B2(cr)/NP(cr) long- and short-term counterparty risk assessments.

This S&P Global Market Intelligence news article may contain information about credit ratings issued by S&P Global Ratings, a separately managed division of S&P Global. Descriptions in this news article were not prepared by S&P Global Ratings.