Friday, June 4, 2010

$BP #BP Standard & Poor's Ratings Services cut BP PLC's (BP, BP.LN) ratings a notch and said it would consider further downgrades

   Standard & Poor's Ratings Services cut BP PLC's (BP, BP.LN) ratings a notch and said it would consider further
downgrades, as the prolonged oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico raises the likely range of potential environmental-damage
claims and other costs.    The credit ratings agency said it plans to review the spill's impact on the oil giant's business and financial-risk 9999
profiles. Additional downgrades are possible if the spill is prolonged or there is a significant re-evaluation of the
costs.    BP's American depositary shares were down 4% at $37.72 in recent trading, amid a broad market decline. The ADSs are  off 35% this year.    BP on Friday said some oil was flowing up a pipe from a cap it placed on its broken Gulf of Mexico well, but crude  still spewed and it was unclear how much could be captured.
  The well has spit out between 21 million and 46 million gallons of oil since a rig exploded on April 20 about 50 miles
from the Louisiana coast, killing 11 workers. BP was leasing the rig from Transocean Ltd. (RIG) and is responsible to
fix and clean up the spill.

The AA- rating and negative outlook reflects S&P's concerns about the costs this year for capping the well and
clean-up, which S&P estimates at several billion dollars, as well as the potential for increased regulation and scrutiny
of the U.S. offshore oil industry and the impact on BP's reputation and brand. The rating is three notches under AAA.
  Since S&P shifted its outlook on BP to negative in early May, the company has made a number of unsuccessful attempts
to stem the flow of oil from the well. S&P said depending on how long it takes to cap the wells, the eventual cost of
the spill go far higher.
  Fitch Ratings and Moody's Investors Service downgraded BP's ratings a notch each and both warned that further
downgrades were possible as the company's liability for the spill escalated into billions of dollars and it faced a
criminal investigation.

   -By Tess Stynes, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2481;;
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