Rating agency Standard & Poor’s downgrades the rating of 18 financial institutions including Wells Fargo, Capital One Financial, and BB&T causing a little drag on the markets today as S&P considers higher market volatility as well as increased regulation. Five of the banks even became high-yield, high-risk junk bonds crossing the BBB- level. These include Carolina First Bank, Citizens Republic Bancorp Inc., Huntington Bancshares Inc., Synovus Financial Corp. and Whitney Holding Corp.
BB&T Corp., Regions Financial Corp. and U.S. Bancorp were also among the lenders downgraded today. S&P said it plans to hold a conference call tomorrow to discuss the decision, which came after S&P placed 23 financial companies on watch last month for possible downgrades.
S&P today affirmed PNC Financial Group Inc.’s A credit rating and moved its outlook on the lender to stable from negative.