Ratings and Rankings for Russia
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Last updated: June 3, 2017
About Standard & Poor’s
S&P Rating Services, which is a part of Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC owned by McGraw-Hill, is one of the Top 3 leading credit rating agencies of the world.
S&P elaborates and releases issuer credit ratings (ICRs) for sovereigns that assess sovereigns’ ability and willingness to service financial obligations to nonofficial (commercial) creditors.
S&P’s web-site: https://www.standardandpoors.com
S&P offers the following key indicators for the sovereign credit risk assessment:
- Sovereign foreign currency credit ratings, both the short-term and the long-term ones.
- Sovereign local currency credit ratings, both the short-term and the long-term ones.
- National Scale credit ratings for a sovereign that represents opinion of a sovereign’s creditworthiness or overall capacity to meet specific financial obligations relative to other issuers and issues belonging to a given country. Rating prefix points at specific country, e.g. ruAAA for Russia.
- Transfer & Convertibility (T&C) Assessment reflects Standard & Poor's view of the likelihood of a sovereign restricting non-sovereign access to foreign exchange needed to satisfy the non-sovereign's debt service obligations.
- Outlook addresses likely developments of sovereign ratings for a country.
Rating Scale of S&P
Long-Term Sovereign Rating Scale
|AAA||Extremely strong capacity to meet financial commitments||Investment||-|
|AA||Strong capacity to meet financial commitments||Investment||-|
|A||Strong capacity to meet financial commitments||Investment||The issuer more susceptible to the adverse effects of changes in circumstances and economic conditions as compared to AAA and AA categories.|
|BBB||Adequate capacity to meet financial commitments||Investment||Adverse economic conditions or changing circumstances are more likely to lead to a weakened capacity.|
|BB||Lowest vulnerability within speculative grade||Speculative||The issuer is less vulnerable in the near term than other issuers of speculative grade. There are still major ongoing uncertainties and exposure to adverse business, financial, or economic conditions which could lead to inadequate capacity to meet financial commitments.|
|B||More vulnerability as compared to 'BB' rating||Speculative||There is still the capacity to meet financial commitments that can be impaired by adverse business, financial, or economic conditions.|
|CCC||The issuer is considered vulnerable||Speculative||Vulnerability of the issuer and dependence upon favourable business, financial, and economic conditions in meeting financial commitments.|
|CC||The issuer is considered highly vulnerable||Speculative||A default has not yet occurred, but S&P expects default to be a virtual certainty, regardless of the anticipated time to default.|
|SD / D||Selective Default / Default||Speculative||The issuer is in default on one or more of its financial obligations. D rating is assigned when there is a general default, and the issuer is considered to fail to pay all or substantially all obligations. SD rating is assigned when the issuer will fail to make payment on specific issue or class of obligations, while the other commitments are likely to be properly met. Distressed exchange offer of the issuer leads to decrease of rating to SD/D.|
|NR||The issuer is not rated||-||-|
Short-Term Sovereign Rating Scale
|A-1||Strong capacity to meet financial commitments||Investment||Sometimes “+” modifier is added that reflects extremely strong capacity.|
|A-2||Satisfactory capacity to meet financial commitments||Investment||Greater susceptibility to the adverse effects of changes in circumstances and economic conditions as compared to A-1.|
|A-3||Adequate capacity to meet financial commitments||Investment||Adverse economic conditions or changing circumstances are more likely to lead to a weakened capacity.|
|B||Vulnerability and significant speculative characteristics||Speculative||Current capacity to meet financial commitments with major ongoing uncertainties which could lead to inadequate capacity.|
|C||Current vulnerability to non-payment that would result in 'SD' or 'D' rating||Speculative||Dependence upon favourable business, financial, and economic conditions to meet financial commitments.|
|SD/D||Selective Default / Default||Speculative||The issuer is in default on one or more of its financial obligations. D rating is assigned when there is a general default, and the issuer is considered to fail to pay all or substantially all obligations. SD rating is assigned when the issuer will fail to make payment on specific issue or class of obligations, while the other commitments are likely to be properly met. Distressed exchange offer of the issuer leads to decrease of rating to SD/D.|
|NR||The issuer is not rated||-||-|
Additional information on the S&P’s rating scale can be found at:
In the course of elaboration of sovereign ratings S&P relies upon the following factors:
- Institutional and governance effectiveness and security risks (reflected in the institutional assessment);
- Economic structure and growth prospects (economic assessment);
- External liquidity and international investment position (external assessment);
- Fiscal performance and flexibility as well as debt burden (fiscal assessment).
- Monetary flexibility (monetary assessment);
Additional information on the S&P’s sovereign ratings methodology can be found at:
S&P Sovereign Ratings for Russia
The first sovereign credit rating was assigned to Russia by S&P in October 1996.
Due to default of the Russian state in the course of 1998 crisis the sovereign ratings overcame substantial deterioration with recovery to 1996 levels taking place only in the middle of 2002.
Throughout the 2000s the sovereign ratings were gradually improving reflecting positive changes in economic and financial status of Russia that came in line with oil prices growth. As a result, long-term foreign currency sovereign rating of Russia reached its maximum level of BBB+ in September 2006.
There had been minor deterioration of the sovereign ratings of Russia related to crisis of 2008-2009 with BBB long-term foreign currency sovereign rating assigned. The availability of substantial reserves did not allow for substantial negative changes.
After the beginning of Ukrainian events in March 2014 that were accompanied by deterioration of political and economic relations of Russia there also started rapid deterioration of S&P’s sovereign ratings for the country.
The long-term foreign currency sovereign rating settled at BB+ in January 2015 that is one category below the investment grade and corresponds to the level observed in 2004.
The last review was made on March 17, 2017, when the sovereign ratings were affirmed at previous levels (BB+/B for foreign currency and BBB-/A-3 for local currency) with outlook changed to “positive”.
|Fiscal assessment: flexibility and performance||Neutral|
|Fiscal assessment: debt burden||Strength|
Source: Press-release of S&P dated September 16, 2016.
S&P Retrospective Ratings for Russia
|Date||Sovereign credit ratings||Long-term Russia National Scale rating||Transfer & Convertibility Assessment||Outlook|
|Foreign currency||Local currency|
|October 4, 1996||BB-||B||-||-||-||-||stable|
|December 19, 1997||BB-||B||-||-||-||-||negative|
|May 27, 1998||BB-||B||-||-||-||-||Watch negative|
|June 9, 1998||B+||B||-||-||-||-||stable|
|August 13, 1998||B-||C||-||-||-||-||negative|
|August 17, 1998||CCC||C||-||-||-||-||negative|
|September 16, 1998||CCC-||C||-||-||-||-||negative|
|January 27, 1999||SD||SD||-||-||-||-||NM (not meaningful)|
|May 7, 1999||SD||SD||CCC||C||-||-||NM/stable|
|February 15, 2000||SD||SD||CCC+||C||-||-||NM/positive|
|July 27, 2000||SD||SD||B-||C||-||-||NM/stable|
|December 8, 2000||B-||C||B-||C||-||-||stable|
|June 28, 2001||B||B||B||B||-||-||stable|
|October 4, 2001||B||B||B||B||-||-||positive|
|December 19, 2001||B+||B||B+||B||-||-||stable|
|February 22, 2002||B+||B||B+||B||-||-||positive|
|July 26, 2002||BB-||B||BB-||B||-||-||stable|
|December 5, 2002||BB||B||BB+||B||-||-||stable|
|November 3, 2003 (rating affirmed)||BB||B||BB+||B||ruAA+||-||stable|
|January 27, 2004||BB+||B||BBB-||A-3||ruAA+||-||stable|
|January 31, 2005||BBB-||A-3||BBB||A-3||ruAAA||-||stable|
|November 1, 2005||BBB-||A-3||BBB||A-3||-||BBB-||stable|
|November 3, 2005||BBB-||A-3||BBB||A-3||-||BBB||stable|
|December 15, 2005||BBB||A-2||BBB+||A-2||ruAAA||BBB+||stable|
|September 4, 2006||BBB+||A-2||A-||A-2||ruAAA||A-||stable|
|August 21, 2007 (rating affirmed)||BBB+||A-2||A-||A-2||ruAAA||A-||stable|
|March 11, 2008||BBB+||A-2||A-||A-2||-||A-||positive|
|September 19, 2008||BBB+||A-2||A-||A-2||-||A-||stable|
|October 23, 2008||BBB+||A-2||A-||A-2||-||BBB+||negative|
|December 8, 2008||BBB||A-3||BBB+||A-2||-||BBB||negative|
|December 21, 2009||BBB||A-3||BBB+||A-2||ruAAA||BBB||stable|
|June 27, 2012||BBB||A-2||BBB+||A-2||ruAAA||BBB||stable|
|December 13, 2013 (rating affirmed)||BBB||A-2||BBB+||A-2||ruAAA||-||stable|
|March 21, 2014 (outlook revised, rating affirmed)||BBB||A-2||BBB+||A-2||ruAAA||-||negative|
|April 25, 2014||BBB-||A-3||BBB||A-2||ruAAA||BBB-||negative|
|October 27, 2014 (rating affirmed)||BBB-||A-3||BBB||A-2||ruAAA||-||negative|
|January 26, 2015||BB+||B||BBB-||A-3||ruAAA||BB+||negative|
|April 20, 2015 (rating affirmed)||BB+||B||BBB-||A-3||ruAAA||-||negative|
|October 19, 2015 (rating affirmed)||BB+||B||BBB-||A-3||-||-||negative|
|February 17, 2016 (rating affirmed)||BB+||B||BBB-||A-3||ruAAA||-||negative|
|March 18, 2016 (rating affirmed)||BB+||B||BBB-||A-3||ruAAA||-||negative|
|September 16, 2016 (outlook changed)||BB+||B||BBB-||A-3||ruAAA||-||stable|
|March 17, 2017 (outlook changed)||BB+||B||BBB-||A-3||ruAAA||-||positive|
Sources: Economics and Business department of the Roeters Island Library of the University of Amsterdam (1996-2012), press-releases of S&P: November 3, 2003, January 27, 2004, January 31, 2005, December 15, 2005, September 4, 2006, August 21, 2007, June 27, 2012, December 13, 2013, March 21, 2014, April 25, 2014, October 27, 2014, January 26, 2015, April 20, 2015, October 19, 2015, February 17, 2016, March 18, 2016, September 16, 2016., March 17, 2017.