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Fitch Ratings takes rating action on four NBFCs

STFC’s rating has been affirmed at ‘BB’ and Rating Watch Negative (RWN) has been removed.

PTI | New Delhi |

Fitch Ratings on Monday took rating action on the long-term issuer default ratings of four non-bank financial companies, including Shriram Transport Finance (STFC) and Muthoot Finance (MFL) amid the coronavirus pandemic challenges.

The agency also took rating action on IIFL Finance and Manappuram Finance (MFIN).

The ratings of these entities continue to reflect the considerable economic and financial challenges arising from the pandemic, the global rating agency said.

STFC’s rating has been affirmed at ‘BB’ and Rating Watch Negative (RWN) has been removed.

“The RWN on STFC’s ratings has been removed, as we believe near-term operational uncertainty is easing for the entity,” the rating agency said.

However, the negative outlook on STFC highlights the ongoing downside risk to asset quality and the implication for the company’s funding and liquidity, which the agency expects will only become apparent in the medium term.

IIFL Finance Limited ‘B+’ rating has been maintained on RWN due to continued uncertainty on its funding and liquidity, with trends potentially becoming more evident within the next six months.

MFIN rating has been affirmed at ‘BB-‘ and RWN has been removed. Muthoot Finance’s rating has also been affirmed at ‘BB’ but RWN has been removed. The agency has kept stable outlooks on MFIN and MFL.

The removal of the RWN and stable outlooks on MFIN and MFL’s ratings reflect the entities’ generally resilient performance in the face of significant economic disruption amid local measures to contain the pandemic, the agency said.

The companies’ long-term IDRs were placed on RWN in March this year, as Fitch expected the pandemic to present further macroeconomic and funding challenges for the entities, heightening downside risk to their credit profiles.