Credit rating

Credit ratings measure a borrower’s creditworthiness and provide an international framework for comparing the credit quality of issuers and rated debt securities. Rating agencies allocate three kinds of ratings: issuer credit ratings, long-term debt, and short-term debt. Issuer credit ratings are amongst the most widely watched. They measure the creditworthiness of the borrower including its capacity and willingness to meet financial needs. The top credit rating issued by the main agencies – Standard & Poor’s, Moody’s and Fitch IBCA – is AAA or Aaa. This is reserved for a few sovereign and corporate issuers. Ratings are divided into two broad groups – investment grade and speculative (junk) grade.