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S&P lowers outlook on Hong Kong Mortgage to negative

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services on April 1 said it loweredits outlook on Hong Kong MortgageCorp. Ltd. to negative following a similar action on .

At the same time, S&P affirmed the firm's AAA/A-1+ long-and short-term issuer credit ratings, as well as its "cnAAA/cnA-1+" GreaterChina regional-scale ratings.

S&P said the ratings action reflects its view that the HongKong government will almost certainly offer timely and sufficient extraordinarysupport should the firm need it, given its critical role in maintaining financialstability. The firm's ratings are also aligned with that of the government.

The rating agency said it could downgrade Hong Kong Mortgage'sratings if it downgrades Hong Kong, or if the firm's critical public policy roleor its integral link to the government weakens. However, S&P may revise theoutlook on the company to stable if it does the same to its outlook on Hong Kong.

S&P Ratings and S&PGlobal Market Intelligence are owned by McGraw Hill Financial Inc.