17 July 2012 6:33am
Standard & Poor's yesterday revised its outlook on the BBB+ long-term rating of NAB subsidiary Clydesdale Bank to positive from stable.
S&P said the bank would have a "lower risk profile than historically" once NAB completed the transfer of £6 billion in problem real-estate loans to the balance sheet of the NAB group.
In December last year, the ratings agency cut the credit rating of Clydesdale to BBB+, from A+ (a cut of three notches on the S&P scale). At the same time, S&P cut the long-term rating of NAB to AA-, from AA, consistent with the downgrade of all of the major banks in Australia.
S&P said yesterday that its new position on the outlook for NAB's UK arm "incorporates our view that the broader de-risking and simplification of the franchise and adequate funding and liquidity will support Clydesdale's overall creditworthiness."
"We could revise the outlook to stable if we perceive that NAB is not committed to maintaining capitalisation."