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S&P confirms Italy's credit rating

Says Italy has 1 in 3 chance of downgrade in next 12 months

13 December, 11:45
S&P confirms Italy's credit rating (ANSA) - Milan, December 13 - Standard & Poor's (S&P) confirmed Italy's credit rating at BBB/A-2 with a negative outlook, the rating agency on Friday said in a statement.

S&P said its assessment reflected Italy's ''rich and diversified economy'' as well as the ''risk of a fragile recovery'' due to the country's massive sovereign debt.

The agency added that there was a ''one in three'' chance it would downgrade Italy's credit rating ''by one or more steps'' in the next 12 months.

The move depended on whether or not the Italian government manages to carry out necessary reforms to avoid ''deterioration of debt indicators''.

On the other hand, Italy could see its outlook pumped up to ''stable'' if the executive introduces market reforms for labour, services and products that boost growth, it said.

On Thursday S&P issued a 2014 economic forecast for Italy of 0.4%-0.5% growth in gross domestic product (GDP).

The estimate was much lower than the Italian government's prediction of 1.0% growth, as well as S&P's 0.8% GDP growth estimate for Spain in 2014.