These Three Spanish Banks Will Be Downgraded Tomorrow

As is well-known in the ratings world, sovereign downgrades never come alone: first the sovereign is cut, then sovereign-supported domestic banks (the sovereign is the threshold rating), then general financial companies like insurance firms and specialty fins. Such downgrades are particularly painful when they go through a major threshold such from A to B as they spring various collateral and margin calls into action. One thing we do know is that the last thing undercapitalized Spanish banks can afford now is even more margin calls, and even greater collateral haircuts. However, this is precisely what will happen for the following 3 banks tomorrow: Banco Popular Espanol, Banco Santander and BBVA, all of which are currently at the old sovereign rating of A3 and tomorrow will see their rating cut to Baa3, and we fully expect the other three Moody's rated banks: Caixa, Banco Financiero y de Ahorros and Sabadell to be cut anywhere between 1 and 3 more notches, sending them into junk territory. We can only hope that the ESM or whatever Spanish bank bailout scheme is operational tomorrow as suddenly all of the banks below will find themselves without any willing counterparties around the world.

And for those who want a great interactive rating infographic of all European banks, one can be found at the WSJ after the jump below.