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October 01, 2022

Moody’s, however late, awards investment grade rating to defunct UCPB

Defunct United Coconut Planters Bank (UCPB) received a credit rating from Moody’s Investors Service a few days after it was dissolved as a result of its merger with state-run Land Bank of the Philippines.

UCPB ceased to exist last March 1 after the consolidation wherein Landbank is the surviving entity absorbed all its assets and liabilities.

Last March 4, Moody’s upgraded the rating of UCPB to investment grade Baa2 from speculative grade Ba3 on the back of a stable .

Moody’s explained that the ratings were placed on review for possible upgrade in August last year.

The credit rating agency pointed out that it would withdraw all of UCPB’s ratings.

“All of UCPB’s liabilities have been assumed by Landbank. Subsequently, Moody’s will withdraw the Baseline Credit Assessment and the deposit ratings assigned to UCPB,” Moody’s said.

The assets of UCPB stood at P347.4 billion as of end 2020, while the resources of Landbank was placed at P2.4 trillion.

As a result of the merger, assets held by Landbank will increase to nearly P3 trillion, cementing its position as the second largest bank in terms of assets.

“Moody’s estimates the combined entity will be the second-largest bank in the Philippines, with a market share in assets of approximately 15 percent as of the end of 2020,” the debt watcher said.

President Duterte issued Executive Order 142 last year approving the merger in an effort to improve the delivery of financial services to the coconut industry and the agriculture sector.

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