16.11.2012 12:45
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Confederacion Espanola de Cajas de Ahorro -- Moody's assigns Ba1/NP/D to CECABANK; ratings on review for downgrade

Withdraws the Ba1/NP/D ratings of its parent CECA upon transfer of financial business to CECABANK

Madrid, November 16, 2012 -- Moody's Investors Service has today assigned long and short-term deposit ratings of Ba1/Not-Prime and a standalone bank financial strength rating (BFSR) of D (equivalent to a ba2 standalone credit assessment) to the new entity CECABANK, S.A. This follows the transfer of the financial business to CECABANK (effective as of 12 November 2012) from its parent, the savings bank Confederación Española de Cajas de Ahorros (CECA). The review for downgrade for the long-term deposit ratings as well as for the standalone BFSR is maintained following the transfer to CECABANK.

At the same time, Moody's has withdrawn the following ratings of CECA (1) the standalone D/ba2 BFSR; and (2) the long and short-term deposit ratings of Ba1/Not-Prime.

RATINGS RATIONALE

Following the transfer of the financial business, the ratings assigned to CECABANK are at the same level as those formerly assigned to CECA. Subsequent to the segregation of the financial business, CECA's role will be to manage the social-welfare projects and play an associative role for savings banks (financed through dividends paid by CECABANK); it will also act as the holding company of CECA (owning 89% of its total capital). As a result of the transfer, CECABANK has assumed CECA's assets and liabilities, and its debt and deposit obligations. Moody's has consequently withdrawn all of CECA's ratings.

WHAT COULD MOVE THE RATING UP/DOWN

All the ratings of CECABANK are on review for downgrade, as was the case for CECA pre-transfer. The review for downgrade reflects analytical issues specific to CECABANK, which relate to the long-term sustainability of its business model, specifically:

(1) The ongoing consolidation and restructuring process of the savings banks segment which, combined with the declining level of economic activity in Spain, indicates a reduced demand for financial services that constrains CECABANK's recurrent revenue-generation capacity;

(2) The breaking-up of the savings banks segment, which exerts further pressure on CECABANK's critical role as the leading services provider for a segment that, pre-crisis, represented approximately 50% of Spanish banking assets; and

(3) CECABANK's involvement in capital market activities, which contributes to the volatility of its revenues.

Headquartered in Madrid, Spain, CECA had total assets (unaudited) of EUR18.5 billion as of end-June 2012.

PRINCIPAL METHODOLOGIES

The principal methodology used in these ratings was Moody's Consolidated Global Bank Rating Methodology published in June 2012. Please see the Credit Policy page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.

REGULATORY DISCLOSURES

For ratings issued on a program, series or category/class of debt, this announcement provides relevant regulatory disclosures in relation to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series or category/class of debt or pursuant to a program for which the ratings are derived exclusively from existing ratings in accordance with Moody's rating practices. For ratings issued on a support provider, this announcement provides relevant regulatory disclosures in relation to the rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular rating action for securities that derive their credit ratings from the support provider's credit rating. For provisional ratings, this announcement provides relevant regulatory disclosures in relation to the provisional rating assigned, and in relation to a definitive rating that may be assigned subsequent to the final issuance of the debt, in each case where the transaction structure and terms have not changed prior to the assignment of the definitive rating in a manner that would have affected the rating. For further information please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page for the respective issuer on www.moodys.com.

The ratings have been disclosed to the rated entities or their designated agent(s) and issued with no amendment resulting from that disclosure.

Information sources used to prepare each of the ratings are the following: parties involved in the ratings, public information, and confidential and proprietary Moody's Investors Service information.

Moody's considers the quality of information available on the rated entities, obligations or credits satisfactory for the purposes of issuing these ratings.

Moody's adopts all necessary measures so that the information it uses in assigning the ratings is of sufficient quality and from sources Moody's considers to be reliable including, when appropriate, independent third-party sources. However, Moody's is not an auditor and cannot in every instance independently verify or validate information received in the rating process.

Moody's Investors Service may have provided Ancillary or Other Permissible Service(s) to the rated entities or their related third parties within the two years preceding the credit rating action. Please see the special report "Ancillary or other permissible services provided to entities rated by MIS's EU credit rating agencies" on the ratings disclosure page on our website www.moodys.com for further information.

Please see the ratings disclosure page on www.moodys.com for general disclosure on potential conflicts of interests.

Please see the ratings disclosure page on www.moodys.com for information on (A) MCO's major shareholders (above 5%) and for (B) further information regarding certain affiliations that may exist between directors of MCO and rated entities as well as (C) the names of entities that hold ratings from MIS that have also publicly reported to the SEC an ownership interest in MCO of more than 5%. A member of the board of directors of this rated entity may also be a member of the board of directors of a shareholder of Moody's Corporation; however, Moody's has not independently verified this matter.

Please see Moody's Rating Symbols and Definitions on the Rating Process page on www.moodys.com for further information on the meaning of each rating category and the definition of default and recovery.

Please see ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for the last rating action and the rating history.

The date on which some ratings were first released goes back to a time before Moody's ratings were fully digitized and accurate data may not be available. Consequently, Moody's provides a date that it believes is the most reliable and accurate based on the information that is available to it. Please see the ratings disclosure page on our website www.moodys.com for further information.

Please see www.moodys.com for any updates on changes to the lead rating analyst and to the Moody's legal entity that has issued the rating.

Alberto Postigo Vice President - Senior Analyst Financial Institutions Group Moody's Investors Service Espana, S.A. Calle Principe de Vergara, 131, 6 Planta Madrid 28002 Spain JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456 SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454 Johannes Wassenberg MD - Banking Financial Institutions Group JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456 SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454 Releasing Office: Moody's Investors Service Espana, S.A. Calle Principe de Vergara, 131, 6 Planta Madrid 28002 Spain JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456 SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454 (C) 2012 Moody's Investors Service, Inc. and/or its licensors and affiliates (collectively, "MOODY'S"). All rights reserved.

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