Moody’s worries about the chemical industry

Economic growth, Financial Events, Leverage

Moody’s, the global ratings agency, is today forecasting a 70% chance of a U-shaped recession, and a 15% chance of either a V or L-shaped downturn. This broadly agrees with the blog’s own view, set out a month ago. Moody’s also singles out the chemical industry as being one of those most at risk from a lengthy downturn. It highlights 2 key risks as being higher crude oil prices, and a major downturn in commodity margins.

It also worries about the impact of the “weak credit environment” on “financially stressed companies”. It points out this will make it difficult for them to “sell assets and generate liquidity”, and could force them “to sell their best businesses”. Moody’s worries that this “would greatly impair their ability to recover in a weak operating market”. CFOs will also be be worried when they read the report (

Moody’s credit risks Jan09.pdf

).

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