Thursday, April 9, 2009

Moody’s Downgrades Berkshire Hathaway

Moody's Investors Service has cut Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway triple-A rating.

Moody’s dropped Berkshire two notches, to double-A2.

“Today’s rating actions reflect the impact on Berkshire’s key businesses of the severe decline in equity markets over the past year as well as the protracted economic recession,” Bruce Ballentine, Moody’s lead analyst on Berkshire, said on Wednesday in a statement.

Last month, Fitch cut Berkshire to double-A, assigning a ”negative” outlook to the rating. In addition to concerns for the performance of Berkshire’s investments and operating units, the firm also reiterated ”long-standing concerns with respect to ’key man’ risk in the form of the company’s chairman.” Finding a successor to Mr Buffett is a daunting task, Fitch wrote.

Berkshire owns a 20% stake in Moody's.

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