Fitch Warns That Many European Countries May See Ratings Cut This Month

Fitch Ratings

LONDON (AP) — Fitch Ratings says a number of euro countries, including Italy, may see their credit ratings downgraded by one or two notches by the end of this month as they struggle to cope with the debt crisis.

Fitch’s head of sovereign ratings David Riley says Tuesday the agency will give its verdict on several countries by the end of January. Fitch currently has Italy, Spain, Belgium, Ireland, Slovenia and Cyprus on so-called “ratings watch negative.”

Much interest in the markets centres on Italy, which Riley says is the “front line” of Europe’s debt crisis.

“The future of the euro will be decided at the gates of Rome,” says Riley.