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Essential Intelligence: Credit Ratings

Credit Ratings

Credit Ratings

Credit Ratings are opinions about credit risk. They can express a forward-looking opinion about the capacity and willingness of an entity to meet its financial commitments as they come due, and also the credit quality of an individual debt issue, such as a corporate or municipal bond, and the relative likelihood that the issue may default.


Credit Ratings also foster the development and smooth functioning of capital markets by providing transparent information and insight to market participants.




Distribution of Credit Ratings

Our Credit Ratings are provided for distribution to public or private markets or, where applicable, available for internal (confidential) management use only.

They are distributed where applicable, on the following basis:
  • Public ratings (issuer/issue): distributed via our websites and various news media, for issuers of publicly rated securities or private loan transactions of any size.
  • Private ratings (issuer/issue): distributed via a secure website for distribution to up to 75 named third-parties.
  • Confidential ratings (generally issuer level): not distributed. Applicable for use by entities seeking an internal benchmark.

Preliminary ratings, with the 'prelim' suffix, may be assigned to obligators or obligations, including financial programs, in the circumstances described in S&P Global Ratings Definitions. Assignment of a final rating is conditional on the receipt by S&P Global's appropriate documentation. S&P Global reserves the right not to issue a final rating. Moreover, if a final rating is issued, it may differ from the preliminary rating.

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