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Standard & Poor’s affirms NBK’s ratings at A+, Stable Outlook

May 8, 2014 10:58 am

Standard & Poor’s, the international credit rating agency, affirmed the long-term credit ratings of National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) at A+ with a Stable Outlook.

In its latest report on NBK, Standard & Poor’s pointed out that NBK’s major rating strengths include its leading commercial position in the domestic market, strong capitalization on the back of good earning capacity, and more resilient asset quality than that of its peers.

The agency added, “NBK’s business position is strong and will remain stable, underpinned by its leading position in Kuwait, long track record of good and stable performance, as well as good and experienced management. Standard & Poor’s assessed NBK’s capital and earnings as ‘strong’.”

Earlier last month, Moody’s Investors Service also said in its credit opinion report that NBK is well positioned to take advantage of new business opportunities as the Kuwaiti government’s development plan begins to gain traction in 2014 with more infrastructure projects being tendered than in previous years.

Moody’s stressed that NBK is one of the few local banks with the capacity to structure and underwrite large capital market transactions and is also a leader in trade finance. NBK has historically acted as lead-financer for the majority of public contracts awarded to foreign companies, and the bank’s size places it in a preferential position to exploit larger credit opportunities compared to its domestic peers.

NBK has consistently been awarded the highest credit ratings in the region by the major international rating agencies: Moody’s, Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings. NBK is the only Arab bank to be listed among the world’s 50 safest banks eight times in a row.

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