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Fitch takes rating actions on six Omani banks

26 Aug 2020

Fitch Ratings on Wednesday has taken rating actions on six Omani banks. The global ratings agency has downgraded long-term issuer default ratings (IDR) of Bank Muscat, HSBC Bank Oman and Ahli Bank, while affirming the long-term IDRs of BankDhofar, Sohar International Bank and National Bank of Oman (NBO).

In its announcements, Fitch said that the rating actions on Omani banks follow the downgrade of Oman’s sovereign rating on August 17 to ‘BB-’ from ‘BB’.

Fitch has downgraded Bank Muscat’s long-term IDR to ‘BB-’ from ‘BB’. The outlook on bank’s ratings is negative. Fitch has also downgraded Bank Muscat’s viability rating (VR) to ‘bb-’ from ‘bb’ and revised the support rating floor (SRF) to ‘B+’ from ‘BB-’.

Fitch has downgraded HSBC Bank Oman’s long-term IDR to ‘BB’ from ‘BB+’. The outlook is negative. It has also downgraded HSBC Bank Oman’s VR to ‘bb-’ from ‘bb’.

The ratings agency has also downgraded Ahli Bank’s long-term IDR to ‘B+’ from ‘BB-’. The outlook is negative. Fitch has also downgraded Ahli Bank’s VR to ‘b+’ from ‘bb-’ and revised the bank’s SRF to ‘B’ from ‘B+’.

‘As well as the sovereign downgrade, the rating actions on Bank Muscat, HSBC Bank Oman and Ahli Bank incorporate the downside risks to their credit profiles resulting from the economic and financial implications of the coronavirus pandemic,’ Fitch said.

Fitch has affirmed BankDhofar’s long-term IDR at ‘BB-’ with a negative outlook and VR at ‘bb-’. The agency has also revised the bank’s SRF down to ‘B’ from ‘B+’.

Fitch has affirmed NBO’s ‘BB-’ long-term IDR and ‘bb-’ viability rating. The outlook on the long-term IDR is negative. It has also revised down the bank’s SRF to ‘B’ from ‘B+’.

Fitch Ratings has revised Sohar International Bank’s outlook to negative from stable, while affirming the bank’s ‘B+’ long-term IDR. Fitch has also revised down Sohar International’s support rating floor to ‘B’ from ‘B+’.

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