S&P cuts Egypt’s credit ratings

CAIRO (AP) — Ratings agency Standard & Poor’s has pushed Egypt’s sovereign credit ratings deeper into junk status, citing “continued pressure” on foreign reserves.

In a setback to the already worsening economy, S&P said in a statement Thursday that it cut Egypt’s long- and short-term sovereign credit ratings to CCC+ and C, from B- and B.

The rating agency said it expected “financing pressures to remain elevated” and donor support “to remain elusive.”

That was a reference to stalled talks between the Egyptian government and the International Monetary Fund over a $4.8 billion loan to help heal the budget deficit and improve the economic outlook.

The negative rating came despite a $1 billion rise in net international reserves in April to $14.4 billion, thanks to Libyan cash deposits to Egypt’s central bank.

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