Nuts! Just when I feel like saying something for a change, Livejournal is experiencing another DDOS attack (probably instigated by the Russian government, like the one two weeks ago).
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — The United States late Friday lost its triple-A debt rating from Standard & Poor’s for the first time in its history, with the credit-rating agency saying the political system of the world’s... top economy has become less stable and that budget cutting announced earlier this week didn’t go far enough.
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"Apparently we're supposed to care about what some idiots at some corrupt organization think about anything."
--Duncan (Atrios) Blackhttp://www.eschatonblog.com/2011/08/stupids.html
[In November 2009] "Ten months after launching an investigation, the European Commission formally charged Standard & Poor’s with abusing its position as the sole provider of international securities identification codes for U.S. securities by requiring European financial firms and data vendors to pay licensing fees for their use. “This behavior amounts to unfair pricing,” the European Commission said in its statement of objections which lays the groundwork for an adverse finding against S&P. “The (numbers) are indispensable for a number of operations that financial institutions carry out – for instance, reporting to authorities or clearing and settlement – and cannot be substituted."
-Securities Technology Monitor http://www.securitiestechnologymonitor.com/news/-24275-1.html
(courtesy of Wikipedia)
So who is Standard & Poor’s to tell America how much debt it has to shed in order to keep its credit rating? Well, it's the company that Wall Street firms pay bribes to in order to obtain their own AAA credit ratings.
Robert Reich's opinion about that is at http://robertreich.org/post/8099560686
"Standard & Poor’s didn’t exactly distinguish itself prior to Wall Street’s financial meltdown in 2007. Until the eve of the collapse it gave triple-A ratings to some of the Street’s riskiest packages of mortgage-backed securities and collateralized debt obligations.
Standard & Poor’s (along with Moody’s and Fitch) bear much of the responsibility for what happened next..."
((This post may go away from here and move over to my LJ, once the Russian government stops picking on them again.))
##Footnote: See also, this note from David Atkins at Digby's place:
"A downgrade in U.S. debt means functionally that U.S. treasury bills are, in S&P’s oh-so-wise opinion, less trustworthy and a greater credit risk to investors. This comes only a day after investors fled the DOW and S&P500 into the safe and waiting hands of…you guessed it: U.S. treasuries. The same treasuries that S&P suddenly finds a more dangerous buy. So what does that say about the stock market, and the S&P500? Perhaps S&P might wish to re-evaluate the credibility of its own market index."