S&P Cuts Debt Ratings on Morgan Stanley (MS), Merrill (MER), Lehman (LEH)

S&P cut its credit ratings on Morgan Stanley (MS), Merrill Lynch (MER), and Lehman Brothers (LEH) all had. Why? Because S&P expects more write-downs on the banks’ assets, although not of the same magnitude as before. Is that new news, though?

The S&P also said this in their statement today:

The outlooks on the large financial institutions sector in the U.S. are now predominantly negative.

At what point in the last several months has the outlook been anything but “predominantly negative”? Regardless, stocks tumbled on the news.

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