[IWAR] MALAYSIA downgraded by Moody's

From: Michael Wilson (MWILSON/0005514706at_private)
Date: Mon Dec 22 1997 - 16:09:34 PST

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                               Moody's downgrades Malaysia
          Copyright ) 1997 Nando.net
          Copyright ) 1997 The Associated Press
       KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (December 22, 1997 02:07 a.m. EST
       http://www.nando.net) -- Moody's Investors Services downgraded Malaysian
       bonds and bank deposits today, citing the country's increasing
       vulnerability to financial instability in the region.
       Moody's, an international rating agency, downgraded Malaysia's foreign
       currency country ceiling for bonds from A2 to A1 and lowered the bank
       deposit ceiling to Baa1 from A1.
       Over the weekend, the International Monetary Fund forecast that Malaysia
       would record a GDP growth rate of 2.5 percent during 1998, about half
       the figure Malaysian authorities had projected.
       Malaysia's currency and stock market have been among those hardest hit
       by the region's economic turmoil. Since July, the Malaysian ringgit has
       depreciated 34 percent.
       To cool its over-heating economy, Malaysia has cut government spending
       by 18 percent, trimmed Cabinet salaries and canceled expensive building
       Thailand, Indonesia and South Korea have accepted IMF bailouts totaling
       nearly $100 billion to save their economies this year but Malaysia has
       maintained it will handle its financial problems without IMF assistance.

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