According to International Adviser, “Credit ratings agency Standard & Poor’s has downgraded Guernsey and the Isle of Man from AAA to AA+, outlook stable, owing to concerns over their external vulnerability and lack of monetary flexibility.”

Patrick Tan from Legg Mason Asset Management once said:

As we have learnt from the global financial crisis, “Rating Agencies have a penchant for communicating what we already know to be the case, and chooses to do so at the worst possible time.”

Isle of Man – A small dot in Europe

If you could recall, S&P still gave A long-term counterparty credit rating and an A-1 short-term rating on Lehman Brothers  just before Lehman bankrupted on September 15, 2008.

To look back further, during dot com bubble, did these agencies downgrade Enron, then the America’s 7th largest company, before it collapsed? The answer is NO.

For the most obvious reason, people started to doubt the accuracy of the rating agencies. Then the agencies found their “lifeboat” through unprecedented massive downgrade of sovereign debts.

“Thanks” to the recent downgrade of US government’s credit rating by S&P immediately after US raised its debt ceiling (Perfect Timing), the world credit balance was shaken and the efforts of global recovery were reversed.

The rating agencies rushed to downgrade the nations and banks one after the other amid Europe Debt Crisis.

I never figured out why Guernsey or Isle of Man were rated AAA in the first place. Are you saying that these 500+ square kilometers islands with less than 80,000 people each have better abilities to pay off the debts than any other country in the world?

And now you are saying Temasek Holdings (AAA rated by S&P), an investment company in our small red dot Singapore island, is the best place where you can lend money to in this planet, while the country cannot survive without import water and rice from her neighbors?

I am puzzled…

About the Author

Ivan Guan is the author of the popular book "FIRE Your Retirement". He is an independent financial adviser with more than a decade of knowledge and experience in providing financial advisory services to both individuals and businesses. He specializes in investment planning and portfolio management for early retirement. His blog provides practical financial tips, strategies and resources to help people achieve financial freedom. Follow his Telegram Channel to join the FIRE community.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author. This does not reflect the official position of any agency, organization, employer or company. Refer to full disclaimers here.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}