Fitch Ratings

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Fitch Ratings
Fitch Ratings .jpg
Founded 1913
Headquarters New York and London
Employees 2,100+
Website www.fitchratings.com

Fitch Ratings is one of the leading global credit rating agencies. The company is dual-headquartered in New York and London, with offices and joint ventures in more than 49 locations and covering entities in more than 90 countries, including more than 2,000 insurance companies.

Fitch Ratings is a majority-owned subsidiary of Fimalac, S.A., an international business support services group headquartered in Paris, France.[1]

History

Fitch Ratings was founded as the Fitch Publishing Company on December 24, 1913 by John Knowles Fitch. Located in the heart of the Financial District in New York City, the Fitch Publishing Company began as a publisher of financial statistics whose consumers included the New York Stock Exchange. Fitch Publishing Company provided critical financial statistics to the investment community through such publications as the “Fitch Bond Book” and the “Fitch Stock and Bond Manual”.

In 1924, the Fitch Publishing Company introduced the now familiar “AAA” to “D” ratings scale.

In 1989, Fitch Ratings was recapitalized under a new management team. Throughout the 1990s, Fitch Ratings grew in all areas including the new area of structured finance.

In 1997, Fitch Ratings merged with IBCA Limited, headquartered in London. Through that merger, Fitch Ratings became owned by Fimalac S.A., a holding company which acquired IBCA in 1992.

Fitch Ratings acquired Duff & Phelps Credit Rating Co., headquartered in Chicago, in April, 2000. This was followed by the acquisition later that year of the rating business of Thomson BankWatch. These acquisitions strengthened Fitch Ratings’ coverage in the corporate, financial institution, insurance and structured finance sectors, as well as adding a significant number of international offices and affiliates.

Fitch built a risk practice as an extension of its core business in credit ratings, and in 2004, the Fitch Group acquired Algorithmics, a leader in enterprise risk management.

Recent News

In January of 2008, Fitch Group developed Fitch Solutions, a provider of data, analytics and related services.

In June of 2010, Fitch made headlines when it said that a breakup of the euro zone was unlikely, and would not be to any country's benefit.[2]

In late October 2010, Fitch downgraded Chicago's debt rating for the second time in three months. They downgraded $7 billion of Chicago's outstanding general oblingation bonds to 'AA-' from 'AA'. [3]

Key People

References

  1. About Fitch. Fitch Ratings.
  2. Fitch: Euro Zone Breakup Unlikely, Of No Benefit. Reuters.
  3. Fitch downgrades Chicago for Second Time in Three Months. Wall Street Journal.