Credit ratings agency Moody’s on Thursday revised down its long-term forecasts for Dutch banks ABN Amro, NIBC and Rabobank Nederland from ‘stable’ to ‘negative’. ING was already negative and remains so.
Although the banks are well-capitalised for their current rating levels and therefore resilient to further cyclical changes, the climate in which Dutch banks are operating is becoming increasingly challenging, Moody’s said in a statement.
Three economic developments can undermine the credit worthiness of Dutch banks: a potential 0.6% contraction in the economy this year, rising unemployment which has already reached 7.7% and property investment losses, particularly stemming from high office vacancy rates.
The Dutch central bank and regulator AFM have already told banks they need to take higher losses on their property loans, the Financieele Dagblad said.