Banking consultant and Principal Consultant at Osei Tutu II Centre for Executive Education & Research, Nana Otua Acheampong, has downplayed the likely negative impact, rating agency Moody’s downgrade will have on Ghana Commercial Bank (GCB).
The bank was downgraded last week by the rating agency after downgrading the country a week earlier.
Moody’s downgraded Ghana Commercial Bank’s global local-currency long-term deposit ratings to B2, from B1 and also downgraded the bank’s foreign-currency deposit ratings to B3, from B2, saying the outlook was negative.
According to Moody’s the negative rating outlook is driven by the extensive links between GCB Bank’s balance sheet and sovereign credit risk, owing to the banks’ high direct exposures to government securities.
But speaking to Citi Business News, Banking consultant and Principal Consultant at Osei Tutu II Centre for Executive Education & Research Nana Otua Acheampong said there was no cause for alarm.
‘Really, it is on paper, it has no real effect on the activities of the bank. The bank still remains the strongest bank in Ghana. All their fundamentals are very strong. If they are going to borrow internationally that is when the cost of borrowing will be higher than if they had an A rating. But as far as its operations in Ghana are concerned, it is very, very solid and there is no cause for alarm’. He said
He adds the downgrade will be reversed if Ghana’s downgrade is reversed.
‘According to Moody’s calculation 60 percent of their balance sheet asserts are linked to government bills and government itself has been downgraded, then it follows that in case of difficulty, government that owes you may not be able to meet those liabilities and therefore it becomes a problem. It is a correlation between the two. If government is upgraded then it will reflect into any entity that also has exposure to the state and if the reverse happens then you get the reverse results’. He added.
By: Vivian Kai Mensah/citifmonline.com/Ghana