July 16, 2008 / 3:55 PM / 9 years ago

Fitch cuts Bank of America credit ratings

NEW YORK, July 16 (Reuters) - Fitch Ratings on Wednesday cut its ratings on Bank of America Corp (BAC.N), citing losses from marking down assets including home loans and the potential for other losses including in its credit card portfolio.

Fitch also upgraded its ratings on Countrywide Bank FSB and its affiliates to equalize them with Bank of America’s ratings.

“The primary point of pressure to date has been Bank of America’s sizable home equity loan portfolio with significant exposure to the most problematic U.S. housing markets, including California and Florida,” Fitch said in a statement.

Looking forward, Bank of America NA, a subsidiary of Bank of America Corp, is likely to see credit pressure from its credit card portfolio, the option adjustable rate mortgage portfolio it acquired from Countrywide Bank FSB and from commercial loans, Fitch said.

Pending litigation on Countrywide Bank and Countrywide Financial Corp also adds an additional risk to Bank of America, Fitch said.

Fitch cut Bank of America Corp’s issuer default rating two notches to “A-plus,” the fifth highest investment grade, from “AA.” The outlook is stable, indicating an additional rating change is not anticipated over the coming two years.

Reporting by Karen Brettell; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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