Royal Bank of Scotland, Barclays and HSBC were among the list of the world's biggest banks to be downgraded by Credit rating agency Moody's last night.
While in the US, Bank of America, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan also had their credit ratings cut.
Moody's said the 15 banks affected by the rating actions have significant exposure to the volatility and risks inherent in the capital markets business, which have led many to fail or avoid it only through the receipt of support from a third party.
"All of the banks affected by today's actions have significant exposure to the volatility and risk of outsized losses inherent to capital markets activities", says Moody's Global Banking managing director Greg Bauer.
"However, they also engage in other, often market leading business activities that are central to Moody's assessment of their credit profiles.
"These activities can provide important 'shock absorbers' that mitigate the potential volatility of capital markets operations, but they also present unique risks and challenges."
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