France may lose its AAA status before christmas
Published 18/12/2011 | 05:00
FRANCE could be stripped of its triple-A credit rating before Christmas, raising new doubts about the survival of the euro, analysts predicted last night, writes Toby Helm.
Standard & Poor's -- one of the three top rating agencies -- is expected to cut France's rating within days in a move that would weaken the country's ability to raise funds on financial markets. The move would also pose further questions about the future of the single currency at a time when no one is sure whether the deal thrashed out in Brussels 10 days ago is the big breakthrough hoped for in advance of the summit.
The imminence of a ratings decision by S&P may explain why France has sought to deflect attention in recent days by lashing out against Britain, claiming that the UK's financial position is weaker than its own.