S&P Global Ratings on Dec. 20 downgraded Axa Bank Belgium SA's short-term issuer credit rating to A-1 from A-1+.
S&P affirmed the Axa unit's A+ long-term issuer credit rating, with a stable outlook.
The rating agency said it has revised its view on the Belgium lender's strategic importance to the Axa group to strategically important from highly strategic. As a result, the downgrade of the short-term rating is based on S&P's view that it no longer assumes the parent company's exceptional liquidity to be available to the unit in case of distress.
The stable outlook on the long-term rating reflects the agency's expectation that over the next two years, Axa Bank Belgium will remain a strategically important bank subsidiary for the parent.
S&P Global Ratings and S&P Global Market Intelligence are owned by S&P Global Inc.