Bailout secured, Greece gets rating cut

A day after euro zone finance ministers agreed to a $170 billion bailout for Greece and private debt holders agreed to take at least a 53.5% loss on Greek bonds, Fitch has downgraded the country’s sovereign debt rating to “C” from “CCC.” The ratings agency explained that default is “highly likely in the near term.”

Markets across Europe and Asia remained under pressure as investors expressed skepticism that Greece’s financial woes had been resolved and Athens braced for more violent street demonstrations as Greeks protest further austerity measures. 

By mid-morning trading, London’s FTSE was down 0.52%, the German DAX had tumbled 1.08% and the French CAC 40 had depreciated 0.57%. The euro slipped 0.12% to $1.3218. The British pound depreciated 0.51% to $1.57.

French automaker Peugeot announced today that it is exploring possible “co-operations and alliances” with other car manufacturers. The Financial Times is reporting that Peugeot is seeking a partnership with GM to develop cars. Shares of Peugeot jumped 16.03%.

Overnight in Asia, Tokyo’s Nikkei (EWJquote) climbed 0.96%, Seoul’s KOSPI (EWYquote) rose 0.22% and Chinese shares (YAOquote) appreciated 0.93%. Singaporean stocks (EWS, quote) fell 0.97%. 

In Australia, shares (EWAquote) appreciated 0.09%. Miners, however, took a hit with BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto stock sliding 0.08% and 0.91%, respectively.

The Chinese yuan remained steady at 6.296 to the dollar, while the Japanese yen rose 0.72% to 80.27 against the greenback.

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