«Rating Action: Moody's assigns A3/P-2 deposit ratings to Skandiabanken ASA; outlook stable Global Credit Research - 06 Oct 2015 London, 06 October ...»
Rating Action: Moody's assigns A3/P-2 deposit ratings to Skandiabanken ASA;
Global Credit Research - 06 Oct 2015
London, 06 October 2015 -- -- Moody's Investors Service has today assigned A3/Prime-2 long- and short-term
bank deposit ratings, a baa1 baseline credit assessment (BCA), and a baa1 adjusted BCA to Skandiabanken ASA
following the bank's separation from Sweden's Skandiabanken AB (deposit ratings A2/Prime-1, BCA baa1) on 5
October. The rating outlook is stable.
Moody's also assigned a A1(cr)/Prime-1(cr) Counterparty Risk Assessment (CR Assessment) to Skandiabanken ASA, in line with its revised bank rating methodology published on 16 March 2015.
At the same time, Moody's has withdrawn the ratings and CR Assessments of Skandiabanken AB Filial Norge, the Norwegian branch of Skandiabanken AB, due to reorganisation as its assets and liabilities were transferred to Skandiabanken ASA. A detailed list of the affected issuers and ratings can be found at the end of this press release.
--TRANSFER OF ASSETS AND LIABILITIES TO SKANDIABANKEN ASA IS COMPLETEDYesterday, Skandiabanken ASA took over the activities of Skandiabanken AB Filial Norge, a branch of Sweden's Skandiabanken AB, through a transfer of capital, assets, rights and obligations.
Skandiabanken ASA was granted a banking license by the Norwegian FSA in May 2015, which allows the bank to continue the operations previously undertaken by Skandiabanken AB Filial Norge, without any interruptions. The branch's experienced management team was part of the transfer and the separation includes an 18-month service agreement for the IT systems, mitigating potential issues related to demergers. So, while Skandiabanken ASA is legally a separate entity from Skandiabanken AB Filial Norge, it continues the branch's activities with the same employees and customers. The license to act as a mortgage credit institution allows its subsidiary, Skandiabanken Boligkreditt AS, to issue covered bonds.
Through this transfer, Skandia group is taking the first steps towards exiting the Norwegian operations of Skandiabanken, which the group considers no longer strategically important, focusing on its Swedish core market.
Moody's considers the Norwegian banking operations as more profitable than the Swedish, and believes that Skandiabanken ASA will be able to continue its strong performance without being part of Skandiabanken AB.
Skandia has announced that shares in Skandiabanken ASA will be transferred from Skandia AB to Skandia Liv during the fourth quarter of 2015, and following the transfer, it intends to float Skandiabanken ASA on the Oslo Stock Exchange through an initial public offering (IPO).
--RATING CONSIDERATIONS IN LINE WITH RATINGS ASSIGNED TO SKANDIABANKEN AB FILIALNORGE In August, Moody's assigned ratings to Skandiabanken AB Filial Norge in the understanding that the branch's activities would be split off from the Swedish bank. The separation itself hence does not change Moody's intrinsic assessment of the Norwegian activities, including the assessment of loss given failure.
Skandiabanken ASA's baa1 BCA is based on strong profitability and efficiency compared with peers, excellent asset quality despite aggressive lending growth, and adequate capitalization, balanced against increasing use of wholesale funding, and high mortgage concentration. Concurrent with the transfer, the bank completed the issuance of NOK400 million addition Tier 1 capital and NOK500 million Tier 2 capital. The capital raise was aimed at securing Skandiabanken ASA's common equity Tier 1 ratio target of 13% and its total capital ratio target of 16.5%. Moody's also considers Skandiabanken ASA to have low loss given failure through a large cushion of bailin-eligible debt that protects depositors against loss in a currently unlikely failure scenario, resulting in a one notch rating uplift.
We refer to "Moody's assigns A3/P-2 deposit ratings to Skandiabanken's Norwegian branch; outlook stable", published 21 August 2015, for further details on the rating assessment of Skandiabanken's Norwegian operations (https://www.moodys.com/research/--PR_333041).
WHAT COULD MOVE THE RATINGS UP/DOWNAn upgrade of the bank's deposit ratings is currently unlikely given the stable outlook. Upward rating pressure could develop if the bank is sold to an institution with a strong ability and willingness to provide support if needed.
Upward rating pressure could also develop as a result of a larger cushion of bail-in-eligible liabilities whilst not negatively affecting its capital and funding profile. The BCA, and hence deposit ratings, would likely be subject to downward pressure if (1) problem loans increase to more than 2.0% of gross loans, a level considerably higher than the 0.2% average over the last three years; and/or (2) market funds increase to more than 45% of tangible banking assets. Deposit ratings would also be subject to a downgrade if the cushion of bail-in-eligible liabilities were to decrease.
The principal methodology used in these ratings was Banks published in March 2015. Please see the Credit Policy page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.
List of affected ratings
..Issuer: Skandiabanken ASA.... LT Bank Deposits (Local and Foreign Currency), Assigned A3 Stable.... ST Bank Deposits (Local and Foreign Currency), Assigned P-2.... Adjusted Baseline Credit Assessment, Assigned baa1.... Baseline Credit Assessment, Assigned baa1.... Counterparty Risk Assessment, Assigned A1(cr).... Counterparty Risk Assessment, Assigned P-1(cr)
..Issuer: Skandiabanken ASA....Outlook, Assigned Stable
..Issuer: Skandiabanken AB Filial Norge.... LT Bank Deposits (Foreign and Local Currency), Withdrawn, previously rated A3 Stable.... ST Bank Deposits (Foreign and Local Currency), Withdrawn, previously rated P-2.... Adjusted Baseline Credit Assessment, Withdrawn, previously rated baa1.... Baseline Credit Assessment, Withdrawn, previously rated baa1.... Counterparty Risk Assessment, Withdrawn, previously rated A1(cr).... Counterparty Risk Assessment, Withdrawn, previously rated P-1(cr)
..Issuer: Skandiabanken AB Filial Norge....Outlook, Changed To Rating Withdrawn From Stable
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Giovanni Fontana Vice President - Senior Analyst Financial Institutions Group Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
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