Moody’s ratings agency has downgraded the credit ratings of eight top Greek banks – including the largest lender National Bank of Greece.
It said the cuts were because of the banks’ holdings of Greek government bonds which are looking increasingly risky.
Moody’s also cited declining bank deposits and Greece’s struggling domestic economy which contracted 7.3 percent year-on-year in the second quarter of this year, as well as unemployment over 16 percent.
The lenders that were cut to CAA2 from B3 are National Bank of Greece, EFG Eurobank Ergasias, Alpha Bank, Piraeus Bank, Agricultural Bank of Greece and Attica Bank .
Moody’s also downgraded Emporiki Bank of Greece and General Bank of Greece to B3 from B1.
Shares on the Athens Stock Exchange plunged on the news.