Monday 12 November 2012, 12:44 | By

Ratings agency downgrades Sony Corp

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Sony Corp

The Moody’s bond credit ratings agency downgraded Sony Corp on Friday, from Baa2 to Baa3, meaning the entertainment and electronics giant is now just one step above having its debt securities rated “speculative”.

The rating change follows Sony’s most recent financial update, which actually saw revenues increase, earnings before interest and taxes go into profit, and losses overall half, though even that improved performance didn’t meet expectations in City circles, where analysts had been hoping for a quicker turn round in Sony Corp’s fortunes after years of depressing figures.

Moody’s said that it believed that the Sony film and music businesses remained “stable”, but that it was concerned about the continued poor performance of Sony’s all important consumer electronics divisions, especially TVs and phones. On the entertainment side, the credit agency said that what concerns it had were about the future performance of Sony’s gaming business.

Sony Corp is yet to respond to the downgrading, the group’s second in a month. The company’s newish overall chief, Kazuo Hirai, has been trying to turn round the Japanese conglom’s fortunes, the firm having suffered mainly from the slump in sales of its televisions and some other consumer electronic devices, coupled with a strong yen and some natural disasters hitting certain key operations.

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